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The implications of unverifiable fair-value accounting: Evidence from the political economy of goodwill accounting

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  • Ramanna, Karthik
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    Abstract

    I study the evolution of SFAS 142, which uses unverifiable fair-value estimates to account for acquired goodwill. I find evidence consistent with the FASB issuing SFAS 142 in response to political pressure over its proposal to abolish pooling accounting. The result is interesting given this proposal was due in part to SEC concerns over pooling misuse. I also find evidence consistent with lobbying support for SFAS 142 increasing in firms' discretion under the standard. Agency theory predicts such unverifiable discretion can be used opportunistically.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6V87-4R98K2C-1/1/180c839de93ab189a4b66eb7b8440118
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Accounting and Economics.

    Volume (Year): 45 (2008)
    Issue (Month): 2-3 (August)
    Pages: 253-281

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jaecon:v:45:y:2008:i:2-3:p:253-281

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jae

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    1. Anne Beatty & Joseph Weber, 2006. "Accounting Discretion in Fair Value Estimates: An Examination of SFAS 142 Goodwill Impairments," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(2), pages 257-288, 05.
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    9. Roychowdhury, Sugata & Watts, Ross L., 2007. "Asymmetric timeliness of earnings, market-to-book and conservatism in financial reporting," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1-2), pages 2-31, September.
    10. Kroszner, Randall S & Stratmann, Thomas, 2005. "Corporate Campaign Contributions, Repeat Giving, and the Rewards to Legislator Reputation," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 48(1), pages 41-71, April.
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    13. Tripathi Micky & Ansolabehere Stephen & Jr James M. Snyder, 2002. "Are PAC Contributions and Lobbying Linked? New Evidence from the 1995 Lobby Disclosure Act," Business and Politics, De Gruyter, vol. 4(2), pages 1-26, August.
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    Cited by:
    1. Luc Paugam & Jean-François Casta, 2012. "Joint Audit, Game Theory, and Impairment-Testing Disclosures," Post-Print halshs-00671613, HAL.
    2. Roland Königsgruber, 2013. "Expertise-based lobbying and accounting regulation," Journal of Management and Governance, Springer, vol. 17(4), pages 1009-1025, November.
    3. Guerreiro, Marta Silva & Rodrigues, Lúcia Lima & Craig, Russell, 2012. "Voluntary adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards by large unlisted companies in Portugal – Institutional logics and strategic responses," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 37(7), pages 482-499.
    4. Dai, Lili & Ngo, Phong T. H., 2013. "Political Uncertainty and Accounting Conservatism: Evidence from the U.S. Presidential Election Cycle," MPRA Paper 43606, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Tahoun, Ahmed, 2014. "The role of stock ownership by US members of Congress on the market for political favors," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(1), pages 86-110.
    6. DeFond, Mark L., 2010. "Earnings quality research: Advances, challenges and future research," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2-3), pages 402-409, December.
    7. Choudhary, Preeti, 2011. "Evidence on differences between recognition and disclosure: A comparison of inputs to estimate fair values of employee stock options," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(1-2), pages 77-94, February.
    8. Paul André & Andrei Filip & Luc Paugam, 2013. "Impact of Mandatory IFRS Adoption on Conditional Conservatism in Europe," Post-Print hal-00862683, HAL.
    9. Kothari, S.P. & Ramanna, Karthik & Skinner, Douglas J., 2010. "Implications for GAAP from an analysis of positive research in accounting," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2-3), pages 246-286, December.
    10. Beyer, Anne & Cohen, Daniel A. & Lys, Thomas Z. & Walther, Beverly R., 2010. "The financial reporting environment: Review of the recent literature," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2-3), pages 296-343, December.
    11. Pierre Astolfi & Luc Paugam & Olivier Ramond, 2012. "Purchase Price Allocations: Do they Matter?," Post-Print halshs-00671611, HAL.
    12. Inès Bouden & Luc Paugam & Olivier Ramond, 2011. "Les déterminants de la dépréciation du goodwill : proposition d'un cadre d'analyse," Post-Print hal-00646810, HAL.
    13. Roland Königsgruber, 2010. "A political economy of accounting standard setting," Journal of Management and Governance, Springer, vol. 14(4), pages 277-295, November.
    14. P. Astolfi & Luc Paugam & Olivier Ramond, 2012. "Purchase Price Allocations: Do they Matter?," Post-Print hal-00934973, HAL.
    15. Allen, Abigail & Ramanna, Karthik, 2013. "Towards an understanding of the role of standard setters in standard setting," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 66-90.

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