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Smokescreen: How Managers Behave When They Have Something to Hide

  • Artiga González, Tanja

    ()

  • Schmid, Markus

    ()

  • Yermack, David

    ()

We study financial reporting and corporate governance in 216 U.S. companies accused of price fixing by antitrust authorities. We document a range of strategies used by these firms when reporting financial results, including frequent earnings smoothing, segment reclassification, and restatements. In corporate governance, cartel firms favor outside directors who are likely to be inattentive monitors due to their status as foreign or “busy.” When directors resign, they are often not replaced, and new auditors are rarely engaged. Cartel managers exercise their stock options faster than managers of other firms. While our results are based only upon firms engaged in price fixing, we expect that they should apply generally to all companies in which managers seek to conceal poor performance or personal wrongdoing.

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File URL: http://www1.vwa.unisg.ch/RePEc/usg/sfwpfi/WPF-1309.pdf
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Paper provided by University of St. Gallen, School of Finance in its series Working Papers on Finance with number 1309.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:usg:sfwpfi:2013:09
Contact details of provider: Phone: +41 71 243 40 11
Fax: +41 71 243 40 40
Web page: http://www.unisg.ch/de/Schools/Finance.aspx

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  1. Lang, Mark & Smith Raedy, Jana & Wilson, Wendy, 2006. "Earnings management and cross listing: Are reconciled earnings comparable to US earnings?," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1-2), pages 255-283, October.
  2. Eliezer M. Fich & Anil Shivdasani, 2006. "Are Busy Boards Effective Monitors?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 61(2), pages 689-724, 04.
  3. John Connor & C. Gustav Helmers, 2006. "Statistics On Modern Private International Cartels, 1990-2005," Working Papers 06-11, Purdue University, College of Agriculture, Department of Agricultural Economics.
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  5. Spagnolo, Giancarlo, 2004. "Managerial Incentives and Collusive Behaviour," CEPR Discussion Papers 4506, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  7. Augustin Landier & Julien Sauvagnat & David Sraer & David Thesmar, 2013. "Bottom-Up Corporate Governance," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 17(1), pages 161-201.
  8. Berger, Philip G. & Ofek, Eli, 1995. "Diversification's effect on firm value," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 39-65, January.
  9. repec:cpi:cpijrn:6.2.2010:i=5735 is not listed on IDEAS
  10. Klein, April, 2002. "Audit committee, board of director characteristics, and earnings management," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 375-400, August.
  11. Masulis, Ronald W. & Wang, Cong & Xie, Fei, 2012. "Globalizing the boardroom—The effects of foreign directors on corporate governance and firm performance," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(3), pages 527-554.
  12. Bergstresser, Daniel & Philippon, Thomas, 2006. "CEO incentives and earnings management," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(3), pages 511-529, June.
  13. Michael J. Cooper & Huseyin Gulen & Alexei V. Ovtchinnikov, 2010. "Corporate Political Contributions and Stock Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 65(2), pages 687-724, 04.
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  15. John Connor, 2001. "“Our Customers Are Our Enemies”: The Lysine Cartel of 1992–1995," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 18(1), pages 5-21, February.
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