Product Market Competition and Managerial Disclosure of Earnings Forecasts: Evidence from Import Tariff Rate Reductions.
Ying Huang [McCombs PhD Student]; Jennings, Ross; Yong Yu. Accounting Review. 2017, Vol. 19 Issue 3, p185-207.
This study examines the effect of product market competition on managerial disclosure of earnings forecasts using large reductions in U.S. import tariff rates to identify an exogenous increase in competition for domestic firms in U.S. product markets. Our difference-in-differences estimations show that tariff reductions are associated with a significant decrease in management forecasts of annual earnings by U.S. domestic firms. Further, this decrease is more pronounced when the tariff rate reduction triggers a greater increase in imports and when the forecasts are likely to incur higher proprietary costs. Our findings are consistent with competition from existing rivals reducing voluntary disclosure through increased proprietary costs.
Insider Versus Outsider CEOS, Executive Compensation, and Accounting Manipulation.
Jongjaroenkamol, Prasart [McCombs PhD Student]; Laux, Volker. Journal of Accounting & Economics. Apr2017, Vol. 63 Issue 2/3, p253-261.
This paper examines the role of the financial reporting environment in selecting a new CEO from within versus outside the organization. Weak reporting controls allow the CEO to misreport performance information, which reduces the board's ability to detect and replace poorly-performing CEOs as well as aggravates incentive contracting. We show that these adverse effects are stronger when the CEO is an outsider rather than an insider. Our model predicts that boards are more likely to recruit a CEO from the outside when the performance measures with which the new hire is assessed are harder to manipulate.
Forecasting Taxes: New Evidence from Analysts.
Bratten, Brian; Gleason, Cristi A.; Larocque, Stephannie A.; Mills, Lillian F. Accounting Review. 2017, Vol. 19 Issue 3, p1-29.
We provide new evidence about how analysts incorporate and improve on management ETR forecasts. Quarterly ETR reporting under the integral method provides mandatory point-estimate forecasts by management, but firms must record certain ''discrete'' tax items fully in the quarter in which they occur, polluting these forecasts. We investigate management ETR accuracy, analysts' decisions to mimic management's estimate, analysts' accuracy relative to each other or to management, and dispersion. Our comprehensive analysis reveals that analysts deviate from management more and are more accurate relative to management as complexity increases, with real effects on EPS accuracy and dispersion. In contrast to prior research that analysts ignore or are confused by taxes, we provide evidence that analysts pay attention to taxes and improve on management estimates. Based on our evidence that management's quarterly ETRs have less predictive value in the presence of discrete items, we suggest standard-setters reexamine the discrete item exception to require more disclosure.
IRS and Corporate Taxpayer Effects of Geographic Proximity.
Kubick, Thomas R.; Lockhart, G. Brandon; Mills, Lillian F.; Robinson, John R. Journal of Accounting & Economics. Apr2017, Vol. 63 Issue 2/3, p428-453.
We investigate whether geographic proximity between corporate headquarters and IRS regional offices affects corporate tax avoidance and the likelihood and productivity of IRS examinations. Using geographic distance to represent information asymmetry, we find that corporations avoid more tax when located closer to the IRS unless they are close to an IRS industry specialist. This finding is consistent with taxpayers believing proximity provides them with an information advantage over the IRS. From the perspective of the IRS, we find that the Service is more likely to audit nearby companies and to assess more tax per hour from nearby taxpayers, except during constrained budget years. IRS audit likelihood and productivity are unaffected by the presence of nearby industry specialists, consistent with industry specialist proximity already constraining avoidance. Our tax compliance setting provides dual-party evidence on the proximity-information asymmetry hypothesis.
Blockholder exit threats in the presence of private benefits of control.
Hope, Ole-Kristian; Wu, Han; Zhao, Wuyang. Review of Accounting Studies. Jun2017, Vol. 22 Issue 2, p873-902.
Exit theory predicts a governance role for outside blockholders' exit threats, but this role could be ineffective if managers' potential private benefits exceed their loss in stock-price declines caused by the blockholders' exits. We test this prediction using the Split-Share Structure Reform (SSSR) in China, which provided a large exogenous and permanent shock to the cost for outside blockholders to exit. We find that firms whose outside blockholders experience an increase in exit threats improve performance more than those whose outside blockholders experience no increase. The governance effect of exit threats also is ineffective in the group of firms with the highest concern for private benefits of control. Finally, a battery of theory-motivated tests shows that the documented effects are unlikely explained by outside blockholder intervention or some well-known intended effects of SSSR.