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Comparability Effects of Mandatory IFRS Adoption

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  • Stefano Cascino
  • Joachim Gassen

Abstract

The mandatory adoption of IFRS by many countries worldwide fuels the expectation that financial accounting information might become more comparable across countries. This expectation is opposed to an alternative view that stresses the importance of incentives in shaping accounting information. We provide early evidence on this debate by investigating the effects of mandatory IFRS adoption on the comparability of financial accounting information around the world. Using two comparability proxies based on De Franco et al. [2011], our results suggest that the overall comparability effect of mandatory IFRS adoption is marginal at best. To investigate the reasons for this finding, we first hand-collect data on IFRS compliance for a sample of German and Italian firms and find that firm-, region-, and country-level incentives systematically shape accounting compliance. We then use the identified compliance incentives to explain the variance in the comparability effect of mandatory IFRS adoption and find it to vary systematically with firm-level incentives, suggesting that only firms with high compliance incentives experience substantial increases in comparability.

Suggested Citation

  • Stefano Cascino & Joachim Gassen, 2012. "Comparability Effects of Mandatory IFRS Adoption," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2012-009, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:hum:wpaper:sfb649dp2012-009
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. De George, Emmanuel T. & Li, Xi & Shivakumar, Lakshmanan, 2016. "A review of the IFRS adoption literature," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 67599, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    2. Palea Vera, 2013. "The Effect of the European Regulation 1606/2002 on Market Efficiency: Early Empirical Evidence and Some Suggestions for Future Research and Policy-Making Discussion," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201310, University of Turin.
    3. Saori Matsubara & Takahiro Endo, 2016. "The Role of Local Accounting Standard Setters in Institutional Complexity: 'Explosion' of Local Standards in Japan," Discussion Paper Series DP2016-35, Research Institute for Economics & Business Administration, Kobe University.
    4. Lang, Mark & Stice-Lawrence, Lorien, 2015. "Textual analysis and international financial reporting: Large sample evidence," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 110-135.
    5. Valentin BURCA, 2014. "Implications of IFRS Adoption on Balance-Sheet vs Income Statement Figures," Economics and Applied Informatics, "Dunarea de Jos" University of Galati, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, issue 3, pages 33-42.
    6. Emmanuel T. De George & Xi Li & Lakshmanan Shivakumar, 2016. "A review of the IFRS adoption literature," Review of Accounting Studies, Springer, vol. 21(3), pages 898-1004, September.
    7. Ulf Br&?ggemann & J?rg-Markus Hitz & Thorsten Sellhorn, 2013. "Intended and Unintended Consequences of Mandatory IFRS Adoption: A Review of Extant Evidence and Suggestions for Future Research," European Accounting Review, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(1), pages 1-37, May.
    8. Ray Ball & Xi Li & Lakshmanan Shivakumar, 2015. "Contractibility and Transparency of Financial Statement Information Prepared Under IFRS: Evidence from Debt Contracts Around IFRS Adoption," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(5), pages 915-963, December.
    9. Christian Gross, 2016. "The Effect of the German Accounting Law Modernization Act on the Comparability of Private Local GAAP and IFRS Firms," Schmalenbach Business Review, Springer;Schmalenbach-Gesellschaft, vol. 17(3), pages 423-460, December.
    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. Burnett, Brian M. & Gordon, Elizabeth A. & Jorgensen, Bjorn N. & Linthicum, Cheryl L., 2015. "Earnings quality: evidence from Canadian firms’ choice between IFRS and U.S. GAAP," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 62325, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    12. Francesco Avallone & Claudia Gabbioneta & Paola Ramassa & Marco Sorrentino, 2015. "Why Do Firms Write Off Their Goodwill? A Comparison of Different Accounting Systems," FINANCIAL REPORTING, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2015(1), pages 23-40.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    international accounting; IFRS; comparability; accounting harmonization; financial accounting compliance; reporting incentives;

    JEL classification:

    • M41 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Accounting - - - Accounting
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
    • F42 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - International Policy Coordination and Transmission

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