WASHINGTON - The Senate Banking Committee plans to hold a roundtable discussion with industry officials and regulators June 14 to discuss a proposal that would scrap pooling-of-interests accounting in favor of purchase accounting for mergers by yearend.

In his May 24 invitation letter, Chairman Phil Gramm posed a series of questions for debate, including whether goodwill can appreciate in value and how fluctuations in value can be measured. A full list of participants has not yet been released, but Financial Accounting Standards Board Chairman Edmund L. Jenkins and Securities and Exchange Commission officials are expected to participate.

Goodwill - the difference between the price of an acquired company and its net assets - has been a central issue in the debate over the FASB's controversial plan to eliminate pooling. Many companies argue that goodwill should not be classified as a diminishing asset, but rather should be tested over time.

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