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Voluntary accounting changes and analyst following

Tzu-Ling Huang (PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Taipei, Taiwan)
Tawei Wang (School of Accountancy, Shilder College of Business, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, Hawaii)
Jia-Lang Seng (Department of Accounting, National Chengchi University, Taipei, Taiwan)

International Journal of Accounting & Information Management

ISSN: 1834-7649

Article publication date: 2 March 2015

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to examine the relation between voluntary accounting changes (VACs) and analyst following.

Design/methodology/approach

A sample of firms was collected with VACs in the period from 1994 to 2008 and their major competitors, as well as industry benchmarking firms without accounting changes. The authors then investigated how VACs affect analysts’ following decisions given accounting choice heterogeneity.

Findings

The findings demonstrate that VAC is negatively associated with analysts’ following decisions. Such association becomes stronger after taking into account accounting choice heterogeneity before and after VACs.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the literature in the economic consequences of VACs and suggests that analysts presumably are able to comprehend the differences in accounting choices. However, the additional level of effort and the concern of manipulation may affect analysts’ behavior. This study documents whether VAC results in different accounting choices from the firm’s major competitors or industry benchmarking firms.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful to the financial support from National Science Council Taiwan (NSC 101-2410-H-004-014-MY3), National Chengchi University and the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

Citation

Huang, T.-L., Wang, T. and Seng, J.-L. (2015), "Voluntary accounting changes and analyst following", International Journal of Accounting & Information Management, Vol. 23 No. 1, pp. 2-15. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJAIM-03-2014-0018

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited