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The Severity of Internal Controls over Financial Reporting Deficiencies: Differences among Types and Industries


  • Tatiana Mazza
  • Stefano Azzali


This study analyzes the severity of Internal Control over Financial Reporting deficiencies (Deficiencies, Significant Deficiencies and Material Weaknesses) in a sample of Italian listed companies, in the period 2007- 2012. Using proprietary data the severity of the deficiencies is tested for account-specific, entity level and information technology controls and for industries (manufacturing and services vs finance industries). The results on ICD severity is compared with one of the most frequent ICD (Acc_Period End/Accounting Policies): for account-specific, ICD in revenues, purchase, fixed assets and intangible, loans and insurance are more severe while ICD in Inventory are less severe. Differences in ICD severity have been found in the characteristic account: ICD in loan and insurance for finance industry and ICD in revenue, purchase for manufacturing and service industry are more severe. Finally, we found that ICD in entity level and information technology controls are less severe than account specific ICD in all industries. However, the results on entity level and information technology deficiencies could also mean that the importance of these types of control are under-evaluated by the manufacturing and service companies.

Suggested Citation

  • Tatiana Mazza & Stefano Azzali, 2014. "The Severity of Internal Controls over Financial Reporting Deficiencies: Differences among Types and Industries," FINANCIAL REPORTING, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2014(1), pages 55-77.
  • Handle: RePEc:fan:frfrfr:v:html10.3280/fr2014-001003

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Volpin, Paolo F., 2002. "Governance with poor investor protection: evidence from top executive turnover in Italy," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 61-90, April.
    2. Doyle, Jeffrey & Ge, Weili & McVay, Sarah, 2007. "Determinants of weaknesses in internal control over financial reporting," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1-2), pages 193-223, September.
    3. Roberto Di Pietra & Christos Grambovas & Ivana Raonic & Angelo Riccaboni, 2008. "The effects of board size and ‘busy’ directors on the market value of Italian companies," Journal of Management & Governance, Springer;Accademia Italiana di Economia Aziendale (AIDEA), vol. 12(1), pages 73-91, March.
    4. Marco Allegrini & Giulio Greco, 2013. "Corporate boards, audit committees and voluntary disclosure: evidence from Italian Listed Companies," Journal of Management & Governance, Springer;Accademia Italiana di Economia Aziendale (AIDEA), vol. 17(1), pages 187-216, February.
    5. Nishizaki, Riku & Takano, Yudai & Takeda, Fumiko, 2014. "Information Content of Internal Control Weaknesses: The Evidence from Japan," The International Journal of Accounting, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 1-26.
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