The Financial Accounting Standards Board hammered the first nail into the coffin of qualified special purpose entities, the centerpiece accounting conundrum that has complicated and muddied visibility into the full scope of the credit market meltdown.

At its board meeting last week, FASB voted to begin a short-term project to wipe the concept of QSPEs out of U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.

The QSPE is a concept permitted in Financial Accounting Standard No. 140, Accounting for Transfers and Servicing of Financial Assets and Extinguishments of Liabilities, and in Financial Interpretation No. 46R, Consolidation of Variable Interest Entities. The intention when FAS ...