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The joint effects of materiality thresholds and voluntary disclosure incentives on firms' disclosure decisions

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Author Info

  • Heitzman, Shane
  • Wasley, Charles
  • Zimmerman, Jerold

Abstract

Under GAAP, SEC and exchange listing rules, managers must disclose material information. We construct a disclosure specification incorporating managers' obligation to disclose material information and voluntary disclosure incentives. We demonstrate that tests of the incentives to voluntarily disclose information must recognize such information is often disclosed because of an underlying duty to disclose. Our empirical tests isolating the impact of materiality on firms' disclosures have greater explanatory power over empirical tests that do not. Voluntary disclosure incentives better explain disclosure when the information is less likely to be material. Tests of voluntary disclosure theories ignoring materiality likely lead to incorrect inferences.

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Bibliographic Info

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

Volume (Year): 49 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1-2 (February)
Pages: 109-132

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jaecon:v:49:y:2010:i:1-2:p:109-132

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

Related research

Keywords: Disclosure Voluntary disclosure Materiality Advertising Partial observability model;

References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Lawrence, Alastair & Sloan, Richard & Sun, Yuan, 2013. "Non-discretionary conservatism: Evidence and implications," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 112-133.
  2. Rogers, Jonathan L. & Skinner, Douglas J. & Van Buskirk, Andrew, 2009. "Earnings guidance and market uncertainty," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 90-109, October.
  3. Manuel Núñez-Nickel & Susana Gago Rodríguez, 2010. "Evolutionary model of existing competition and voluntary disclosure," Business Economics Working Papers id-10-06, Universidad Carlos III, Instituto sobre Desarrollo Empresarial "Carmen Vidal Ballester".
  4. Lo, Kin, 2010. "Materiality and voluntary disclosures," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1-2), pages 133-135, February.
  5. Fu, Renhui & Kraft, Arthur & Zhang, Huai, 2012. "Financial reporting frequency, information asymmetry, and the cost of equity," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 132-149.
  6. Amel Ben Rhouma & Marie-José Scotto, 2011. "Implications du principe de matérialité sur le contenu du reporting Développement Durable," Post-Print hal-00646525, HAL.
  7. 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.
  8. Rogers, Jonathan L. & Van Buskirk, Andrew, 2013. "Bundled forecasts in empirical accounting research," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 43-65.
  9. Leung, P.Y.E., 2013. "The influence of reporting standards and inter-firm relationships on financial reporting," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-5919118, Tilburg University.
  10. Rute Gonçalves & Patrícia Lopes, 2014. "Accounting in Agriculture: Disclosure practices of listed firms," FEP Working Papers 530, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
  11. Roychowdhury, Sugata & Martin, Xiumin, 2013. "Understanding discretion in conservatism: An alternative viewpoint," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 134-146.

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