Evidence on differences between recognition and disclosure: A comparison of inputs to estimate fair values of employee stock options
I investigate reliability differences across recognition and disclosure regimes to shed light on differing incentives and reporting of employee stock option (ESO) fair values. I compare ESO fair values based on firm-reported inputs with ESO fair values based on benchmark inputs, estimated following authoritative guidance. On average, I find opportunism increases with recognition as compared with disclosure, and that it is associated with incentives to manage earnings. Despite the increase in opportunism, I find that accuracy does not decline for recognizers, and that accuracy differs across voluntary and mandatory recognition.
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