Fair Value Accounting, Earnings Management and the use of Available-for-Sale Instruments by Bank Managers
Fair value accounting in banking has been criticized for the increased volatility that it generates in some accounting variables. One of its advantages, however, is that it reduces the possibility of discretionary earnings management, given that all gains and losses are immediately recognized. In this paper we qualify both considerations. The accounting regime of available-for-sale (AFS) securities allows for some degree of earnings and capital management: an AFS asset is reported at fair value but gains and losses over historical cost go into net income and measures of regulatory capital only when the asset is sold and the gain or loss realized. We use comprehensive data from US commercial banks and bank holding companies and provide evidence that fair value gains in AFS assets have consistently been used for earnings and capital management and that the holdings of AFS assets are related to the intensity of this activity. Our results show that the earnings management behavior is present both in listed and non-listed banks, suggesting that the motivations go beyond the incentives provided by capital markets. We also uncover significant differences in earnings management behavior over the years of the financial crisis.
|Date of creation:||12 Nov 2012|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.unav.es/facultad/econom|
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.:
- Mitchell A. Petersen, 2009.
"Estimating Standard Errors in Finance Panel Data Sets: Comparing Approaches,"
Review of Financial Studies,
Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(1), pages 435-480, January.
- Mitchell A. Petersen, 2005. "Estimating Standard Errors in Finance Panel Data Sets: Comparing Approaches," NBER Working Papers 11280, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Heaton, John C. & Lucas, Deborah & McDonald, Robert L., 2010. "Is mark-to-market accounting destabilizing? Analysis and implications for policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 64-75, January.
- Degeorge, François & Patel, U & Zeckhauser, Richard, 1998.
"Earnings Management to Exceed Thresholds,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
1790, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- John R. Graham & Campbell R. Harvey & Shiva Rajgopal, 2004.
"The Economic Implications of Corporate Financial Reporting,"
NBER Working Papers
10550, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Graham, John R. & Harvey, Campbell R. & Rajgopal, Shiva, 2005. "The economic implications of corporate financial reporting," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1-3), pages 3-73, December.
- Larry D. Wall & Timothy W. Koch, 2000. "Bank loan-loss accounting: a review of theoretical and empirical evidence," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, issue Q2, pages 1-20.
- Carol Marquardt & Christine Wiedman, 2005. "Earnings Management through Transaction Structuring: Contingent Convertible Debt and Diluted Earnings per Share," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(2), pages 205-243, 05.
- Anand Mohan Goel & Anjan V. Thakor, 2004.
"Why Do Firms Smooth Earnings?,"
- Moyer, Susan E., 1990. "Capital adequacy ratio regulations and accounting choices in commercial banks," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 123-154, July.
- Eccher, Elizabeth A. & Ramesh, K. & Thiagarajan, S. Ramu, 1996. "Fair value disclosures by bank holding companies," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1-3), pages 79-117, October.
- DeFond, Mark L., 2010. "Earnings quality research: Advances, challenges and future research," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2-3), pages 402-409, December.
- Christian Laux & Christian Leuz, 2009.
"Did Fair-Value Accounting Contribute to the Financial Crisis?,"
NBER Working Papers
15515, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Christian Laux & Christian Leuz, 2010. "Did Fair-Value Accounting Contribute to the Financial Crisis?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 24(1), pages 93-118, Winter.
- Laux, Christian & Leuz, Christian, 2009. "Did fair-value accounting contribute to the financial crisis?," CFS Working Paper Series 2009/22, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
- Daniel Perez & Vicente Salas-Fumas & Jesus Saurina, 2008. "Earnings and Capital Management in Alternative Loan Loss Provision Regulatory Regimes," European Accounting Review, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(3), pages 423-445.
- Benston, George J., 2008. "The shortcomings of fair-value accounting described in SFAS 157," Journal of Accounting and Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 101-114.
- Dechow, Patricia M. & Myers, Linda A. & Shakespeare, Catherine, 2010. "Fair value accounting and gains from asset securitizations: A convenient earnings management tool with compensation side-benefits," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1-2), pages 2-25, February.
- Michael Kirschenheiter, 2002. "Can "Big Bath" and Earnings Smoothing Co-exist as Equilibrium Financial Reporting Strategies?," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(3), pages 761-796, 06.
- Allen, Franklin & Carletti, Elena, 2008.
"Mark-to-market accounting and liquidity pricing,"
Journal of Accounting and Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 45(2-3), pages 358-378, August.
- Burgstahler, David & Dichev, Ilia, 1997. "Earnings management to avoid earnings decreases and losses," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 99-126, December.
- Scholes, Myron S & Wilson, G Peter & Wolfson, Mark A, 1990. "Tax Planning, Regulatory Capital Planning, and Financial Reporting Strategy for Commercial Banks," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 3(4), pages 625-50.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:una:unccee:wp0512. 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.