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Obstacles to the harmonisation process in the European Union: the influence of culture

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  • Jose A. Lainez
  • Mar Gasca

Abstract

The existence of distinct valuation and disclosure practices in different countries acts as an obstacle to the comparison of financial information at the international level. Considering that different social, economic and environmental factors influence accounting practices, this paper examines the influence of culture on accounting practices of 150 firms located in 15 EU member states. Using a cluster analysis of the valuation and disclosure practices applied in the sample firms, we compare similarities and differences in EU firms' accounting practices. We find similarities in the sample firms in countries that have closer cultural environments, with cultural factors representing one of the main obstacles in the path of the European Union's accounting harmonisation process.

Suggested Citation

  • Jose A. Lainez & Mar Gasca, 2006. "Obstacles to the harmonisation process in the European Union: the influence of culture," International Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 3(1), pages 68-97.
  • Handle: RePEc:ids:ijaape:v:3:y:2006:i:1:p:68-97
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