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The effect of integrated reporting trends on shareholders' fund: does financial leverage matter?

Alhassan Haladu (Department of Accounting, Faculty of Social and Management Sciences, Yusuf Maitama Sule University Kano, Kano, Nigeria)
Saeed Awadh Bin-Nashwan (Department of Accounting, Finance and Economics, Faculty of Business, Curtin University, Miri, Malaysia)

International Journal of Emerging Markets

ISSN: 1746-8809

Article publication date: 14 February 2023




In many societies, environmental problems have had some negative impacts on both social and economic features with issues like capital structure seriously affected. In this write-up, an attempt has been made to pinpoint the influence of the combined effects of integrated reporting and financial leverage on the value of a firm. In most emerging markets, investment is heavily dependent on foreign capital inflow which is mainly in the form of financial leverage. It is, therefore, necessary to know how this shapes the net worth of firms in which they are invested. Shareholders' fund is a major factor in determining the level of investment and economic stability of a nation and consequently improvements in sustainable development. Hence, the moderating role of financial leverage in the integrated reporting-shareholders’ funds relationship aims to warrant this research.


All listed firms on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) as of 31st December 2021 were affected by this research. Filtering resulted in the use of 77 companies as a sample for the study covering a period of 12 years (2010–2021) with a total of 788 observations. Analyses of data were done through line graphs to show the trend and flow of disclosures between 2010 and 2021. Furthermore, linear regression was also applied to help determine the multiple effects of financial leverage and integrated reporting on shareholders' funds.


The outcomes showed that economic disclosure was 100% throughout the period of observation as opposed to environmental and social disclosures which, fluctuate throughout the period with an average of slightly over 55%. It was also discovered that a low but significant financial leverage moderated the interaction of integrated reporting on shareholders' funds.

Practical implications

Stakeholders and policymakers should, therefore, put in place rules, regulations, standards, structures and administrative networks to enable firms to comply with local rules, guidelines and upgraded standards of international worth on sustainability issues.


This research explores the problem of the effects of integrated reporting on investment capital as it affects developing economies. Results from this study could go a long way in narrowing the lack of interest in sustainability issues by prospective investors coupled with the low level of environmental and social reporting by firms in African economies that are mostly underdeveloped.



Haladu, A. and Bin-Nashwan, S.A. (2023), "The effect of integrated reporting trends on shareholders' fund: does financial leverage matter?", International Journal of Emerging Markets, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print.



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