Competition in the Audit Market: Policy Implications
The audit market's unique combination of features-its role in capital market transparency, mandated demand, and concentrated supply-means it receives considerable attention from policymakers. We explore the effects of two market scenarios that have been the focus of policy discussions: a) further supply concentration due to one of the "Big 4" auditors exiting and b) mandatory audit firm rotation. To do so, we first estimate publicly traded firms' demand for auditing services, treating services provided by each of the Big 4 as differentiated products. We then use those estimates to calculate how each scenario would affect client firms' consumer surplus. We estimate that, conservatively, exit by one of the Big 4 would reduce client firms' surplus by $1.2-1.8 billion per year. These estimates reflect only firms' lost options to hire the exiting auditor; they do not include the likely fee increases resulting from less competition among auditors. We calculate that the latter could result in audit fee increases between $0.3-0.5 billion per year. Such losses are substantial; by comparison, total audit fees for public firms were $11 billion in 2010. We find similarly large impacts from mandatory audit firm rotation, estimating consumer surplus losses at approximately $2.4-3.6 billion if rotation were required after ten years and $4.3-5.5 billion if rotation were mandatory after only four years.
|Date of creation:||Jul 2013|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published as Competition in the Audit Market: Policy Implications JOSEPH GERAKOS1 andCHAD SYVERSON1,2 Journal of Accounting Research Volume 53, Issue 4, pages 725–775, September 2015|
|Note:||CF IO LE|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Doogar, Rajib & Easley, Robert F., 1998. "Concentration without differentiation: A new look at the determinants of audit market concentration," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 235-253, June.
- Craswell, Allen T. & Francis, Jere R. & Taylor, Stephen L., 1995. "Auditor brand name reputations and industry specializations," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 297-322, December.
- Amil Petrin, 2002. "Quantifying the Benefits of New Products: The Case of the Minivan," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(4), pages 705-729, August.
- Emilie Feldman, 2006. "A Basic Quantification of the Competitive Implications of the Demise of Arthur Andersen," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 29(3), pages 193-212, November.
- Kenneth Train, 2003.
"Discrete Choice Methods with Simulation,"
Online economics textbooks,
SUNY-Oswego, Department of Economics, number emetr2, December.
- Herriges, Joseph A. & Kling, Catherine L., 1999.
"Nonlinear Income Effects in Random Utility Models,"
Staff General Research Papers Archive
1494, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
- Watts, Ross L & Zimmerman, Jerold L, 1983. "Agency Problems, Auditing, and the Theory of the Firm: Some Evidence," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(3), pages 613-33, October.
- John K. Dagsvik & Anders Karlström, 2005. "Compensating Variation and Hicksian Choice Probabilities in Random Utility Models that are Nonlinear in Income," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(1), pages 57-76.
- John Asker & Alexander Ljungqvist, 2010. "Competition and the Structure of Vertical Relationships in Capital Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 118(3), pages 599-647, 06.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19251. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.