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Earnings Management through Transaction Structuring: Contingent Convertible Debt and Diluted Earnings per Share

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  • CAROL MARQUARDT
  • CHRISTINE WIEDMAN
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    Abstract

    In this article we examine whether firms structure their convertible bond transactions to manage diluted earnings per share (EPS). We find that the likelihood of firms issuing contingent convertible bonds (COCOs), which are often excluded from diluted EPS calculations under Statement of Financial Accounting Standard (SFAS) 128, is significantly associated with the reduction that would occur in diluted EPS if the bonds were traditionally structured. We also document that firms' use of EPS-based compensation contracts significantly affects the likelihood of COCO issuance and find weak evidence that reputation costs, measured using earnings restatement data, play a role in the structuring decision. These results are robust to controlling for alternative motivations for issuing COCOs, including tax and dilution arguments. In addition, an examination of announcement returns reveals that investors view the net benefits and costs of COCOs as offsetting one another. Our results contribute to the literature on earnings management, diluted EPS, financial reporting costs, and financial innovation. Copyright University of Chicago on behalf of the Institute of Professional Accounting, 2005.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Journal of Accounting Research.

    Volume (Year): 43 (2005)
    Issue (Month): 2 (05)
    Pages: 205-243

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    Handle: RePEc:bla:joares:v:43:y:2005:i:2:p:205-243

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    Cited by:
    1. Dutordoir, Marie & Lewis, Craig & Seward, James & Veld, Chris, 2014. "What we do and do not know about convertible bond financing," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 3-20.
    2. Bhagat, Sanjai & Bolton, Brian, 2008. "Corporate governance and firm performance," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 257-273, June.
    3. Henderson, Brian J. & Zhao, Bo, 2014. "More than meets the eye: Convertible bond issuers' concurrent transactions," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 57-79.
    4. Mary E. Barth & Javier Gomez-Biscarri & Ron Kasznik & Germán López-Espinosa, 2012. "Fair Value Accounting, Earnings Management and the use of Available-for-Sale Instruments by Bank Managers," Faculty Working Papers 05/12, School of Economics and Business Administration, University of Navarra.

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