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Internal governance structures and earnings management

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  • Ryan Davidson
  • Jenny Goodwin-Stewart
  • Pamela Kent
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    Abstract

    This paper investigates the role of a firm's internal governance structure in constraining earnings management. It is hypothesized that the practice of earnings management is systematically related to the strength of internal corporate governance mechanisms, including the board of directors, the audit committee, the internal audit function and the choice of external auditor. Based on a broad cross-sectional sample of 434 listed Australian firms, for the financial year ending in 2000, a majority of non-executive directors on the board and on the audit committee are found to be significantly associated with a lower likelihood of earnings management, as measured by the absolute level of discretionary accruals. The voluntary establishment of an internal audit function and the choice of auditor are not significantly related to a reduction in the level of discretionary accruals. Our additional analysis, using small increases in earnings as a measure of earnings management, also found a negative association between this measure and the existence of an audit committee. Copyright 2005 Accounting and Finance Association of Australia and New Zealand..

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Accounting and Finance Association of Australia and New Zealand in its journal Accounting and Finance.

    Volume (Year): 45 (2005)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 241-267

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    Handle: RePEc:bla:acctfi:v:45:y:2005:i:2:p:241-267

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    Cited by:
    1. Anis Mnif, 2009. "Corporate Governance And Management Earnings Forecast Quality: Evidence From French Ipos," Post-Print halshs-00459171, HAL.
    2. Madonna O’Sullivan & Majella Percy & Jenny Stewart, 2008. "Australian evidence on corporate governance attributes and their association with forward-looking information in the annual report," Journal of Management and Governance, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 5-35, March.
    3. Hany Kamel & Said Elbanna, 2010. "Assessing the perceptions of the quality of reported earnings in Egypt," Managerial Auditing Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 25(1), pages 32-52, January.
    4. Hai Wu & Neil Fargher, 2007. "Components of Accruals, Losses and Future Profitability," Accounting Research Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 20(2), pages 96-110, September.
    5. Wang, Hongxia & Davidson III, Wallace N. & Wang, Xiaoxin, 2010. "The Sarbanes-Oxley Act and CEO tenure, turnover, and risk aversion," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 367-376, August.
    6. Pathak, Jagdish & Sun, Jerry, 2013. "Does investor protection regime affect the effectiveness of outside directorship on the board?," Journal of Multinational Financial Management, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 19-33.
    7. Gladys Lee & Neil Fargher, 2013. "Companies’ Use of Whistle-Blowing to Detect Fraud: An Examination of Corporate Whistle-Blowing Policies," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 114(2), pages 283-295, May.
    8. James Routledge & David Morrison, 2012. "Insolvency administration as a strategic response to financial distress," Australian Journal of Management, Australian School of Business, vol. 37(3), pages 441-459, December.
    9. Peter Franck & Stefan Sundgren, 2012. "Determinants of internal governance quality: evidence from Sweden," Managerial Auditing Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 27(7), pages 639-665, July.
    10. Ahmed A. Al-khabash & Ali A. Al-Thuneibat, 2009. "Earnings management practices from the perspective of external and internal auditors: Evidence from Jordan," Managerial Auditing Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 24(1), pages 58-80, January.
    11. Afef Dhahbi, 2010. "Impact des éléments de gouvernement d'entreprise sur le contenu informationnel des accruals discrétionnaires cas du contexte Français," Working Papers hal-00475202, HAL.
    12. Ester Gras-Gil & Salvador Marin-Hernandez & Domingo Garcia-Perez de Lema, 2012. "Internal audit and financial reporting in the Spanish banking industry," Managerial Auditing Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 27(8), pages 728-753.
    13. Rusmin Rusmin, 2010. "Auditor quality and earnings management: Singaporean evidence," Managerial Auditing Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 25(7), pages 618-638, July.
    14. Raghavan J. Iyengar & Judy Land & Ernest M. Zampelli, 2010. "Does board governance improve the quality of accounting earnings?," Accounting Research Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 23(1), pages 49-68, July.
    15. Laura Sierra García & Emiliano Ruiz Barbadillo & Manuel Orta Pérez, 2012. "Audit committee and internal audit and the quality of earnings: empirical evidence from Spanish companies," Journal of Management and Governance, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 305-331, May.
    16. Chia-Ling Chao & Shwu-Min Horng, 2013. "Asset write-offs discretion and accruals management in Taiwan: the role of corporate governance," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 40(1), pages 41-74, January.
    17. Barbara Arel & Cathy Beaudoin & Anna Cianci, 2012. "The Impact of Ethical Leadership, the Internal Audit Function, and Moral Intensity on a Financial Reporting Decision," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 109(3), pages 351-366, September.
    18. Jesus Sáenz González & Emma García-Meca, 2014. "Does Corporate Governance Influence Earnings Management in Latin American Markets?," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 121(3), pages 419-440, May.
    19. Won Sil Kang & Alan Kilgore & Sue Wright, 2011. "The effectiveness of audit committees for low- and mid-cap firms," Managerial Auditing Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 26(7), pages 623-650, July.
    20. C. Piot & L. Kermiche, 2009. "A quoi servent les comités d'audit ? Un regard sur la recherche empirique," Post-Print halshs-00537952, HAL.
    21. Liyu He, & Sue Wright & Elaine Evans & Susan Crowe, 2009. "What makes a board independent? Australian evidence," Accounting Research Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 22(2), pages 144-166, September.

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