||From 2005 onwards, consolidated financial statements of listed European companies will have to comply with IFRS (IAS). Many German companies began adopting those standards in the 1990s, on a voluntary basis, because of their need to access international capital funding. Spanish companies, by contrast, are not permitted to adopt IFRS before 2005. This paper has two purposes: first, it analyses the financial impact of initial IFRS adoption on the statement of changes in equity and the income statement of individual German companies. Second, and taking into account the German experience, it focuses on the expected impacts on a sample of listed Spanish companies in two industrial sectors: chemical-pharmaceutical and fashion. Our analysis of German companies comprised all non-financial DAX groups applying IFRS plus additional listed companies in the two selected industrial sectors identified above. The impact of initial adoption of IFRS on German companies was, both individually and overall, very significant. The analysis suggests that the expected impact on Spanish companies is likely to be significant but to a lesser degree than in respect of the German companies in the study.