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A Note on the Time Series Measure of Conservatism

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Abstract

Asymmetric persistence of accounting income is often tested in a regression of changes in earnings on lagged changes in earnings, including an interaction term for negative changes (see Basu [1997] or Ball et al. [2009] for a recent overview). In this note we propose an alternative, but closely related measure of conservatism - regressing the changes in earnings on the lagged levels, similar to the threshold-unit root test specification of Enders and Granger [1998]. We argue that this approach has three distinct advantages compared to the conventional setup: (i) a smooth, non-oscillating impulse response pattern to an unexpected shock in earnings (ii) a return to the old equilibrium of earnings in the long run and (iii) it can be extended to higher order autoregressive processes. We illustrate the differences between the two approaches, when applied to a common data set of firms, as well as a data set from a Monte Carlo simulation.

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  • Sebastian Brauer & Frank Westermann, 2010. "A Note on the Time Series Measure of Conservatism," Working Papers 81, Institute of Empirical Economic Research, Osnabrueck University.
  • Handle: RePEc:iee:wpaper:wp0081
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Luis Gil-Alana & Rolando Peláez, 2008. "The persistence of earnings per share," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 31(4), pages 425-439, November.
    2. Ball, Ray & Watts, Ross, 1972. "Some Time Series Properties of Accounting Income," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 27(3), pages 663-681, June.
    3. Ball, Ray & Shivakumar, Lakshmanan, 2005. "Earnings quality in UK private firms: comparative loss recognition timeliness," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 83-128, February.
    4. Cheung, Yin-Wong & Chinn, Menzie D, 1997. "Further Investigation of the Uncertain Unit Root in GNP," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 15(1), pages 68-73, January.
    5. Campbell, John Y & Mankiw, N Gregory, 1987. "Permanent and Transitory Components in Macroeconomic Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(2), pages 111-117, May.
    6. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-838, May.
    7. Basu, Sudipta, 1997. "The conservatism principle and the asymmetric timeliness of earnings," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 3-37, December.
    8. Ball, Ray & Robin, Ashok & Wu, Joanna Shuang, 2003. "Incentives versus standards: properties of accounting income in four East Asian countries," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(1-3), pages 235-270, December.
    9. Enders, Walter & Granger, Clive W J, 1998. "Unit-Root Tests and Asymmetric Adjustment with an Example Using the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 16(3), pages 304-311, July.
    10. Ali, Ashiq & Zarowin, Paul, 1992. "Permanent versus transitory components of annual earnings and estimation error in earnings response coefficients," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2-3), pages 249-264, August.
    11. repec:bla:joares:v:32:y:1994:i:2:p:210-223 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Manuel Arellano & Stephen Bond, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(2), pages 277-297.
    13. Nelson, Charles R. & Plosser, Charles I., 1982. "Trends and random walks in macroeconmic time series : Some evidence and implications," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 139-162.
    14. Windmeijer, Frank, 2005. "A finite sample correction for the variance of linear efficient two-step GMM estimators," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 126(1), pages 25-51, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Sebastian Brauer & Carl-Friedrich Leuschner & Frank Westermann, 2011. "Does the Introduction of IFRS Change the Timeliness of Loss Recognition? Evidence from German Firms," Working Papers 87, Institute of Empirical Economic Research, Osnabrueck University.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Timely loss recognition; Asymmetric persistence; Conservatism;

    JEL classification:

    • M41 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Accounting - - - Accounting
    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models

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