Evaluation of the Risks of Collective Dominance in the Audit Industry in France
AbstractThe financial crisis drew attention to the crucial role of transparency and the independence of financial certification intermediaries, in particular, statutory auditors. Now any anticompetitive practice involving coordinated increases in prices or concomitant changes in quality that impacts financial information affects the effectiveness of this intermediation. It is therefore not surprising that the competitive analysis of the audit market is a critical factor in regulating financial systems, all the more so as this market is marked by various barriers to entry, such as the incompatibility of certification tasks with the preparation of financial statements or consulting, the expertise on (and the ability to apply) international standards for the presentation of financial information, the need to attract top young graduates, the prohibition of advertising, or the two-sided nature of this market where the quality of financial information results from the interaction between the reputation of auditors and audited firms. Against this backdrop, we propose a legal and economic study of the risks of collective dominance in the statutory audit market in France using the criteria set by Airtours case and, in particular, by analyzing how regulatory obligations incumbent on statutory auditors may favour the appearance of tacit collusion. Our analysis suggests that nothing prevents collective dominance of the auditors of the Big Four group in France to exist, which is potentially detrimental to the economy as a whole as the audit industry may fail to provide the optimal level of financial information.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8417.
Date of creation: Jun 2011
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Centre for Economic Policy Research, 77 Bastwick Street, London EC1V 3PZ.
Phone: 44 - 20 - 7183 8801
Fax: 44 - 20 - 7183 8820
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure and Pricing - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
- M42 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting - - Accounting - - - Auditing
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ACC-2011-06-11 (Accounting & Auditing)
- NEP-ALL-2011-06-11 (All new papers)
- NEP-COM-2011-06-11 (Industrial Competition)
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Avdasheva, Svetlana & Goreyko, Nadezhda & Pittman, Russell, 2011. "Abuse of collective dominance under the competition law of the Russian Federation," MPRA Paper 33742, University Library of Munich, Germany.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.