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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2008

Z.Y. Sacho and J.G.I. Oberholster

This paper investigates the factors influencing the future of the IASB, using as the point of departure, a review of its historical progression towards becoming the global…

Abstract

This paper investigates the factors influencing the future of the IASB, using as the point of departure, a review of its historical progression towards becoming the global accounting standard‐setting authority. It concludes that the IASB is an organisation vulnerable to (1) political lobbying of influential institutions, (2) US accounting authorities decision makers, (3) potential accounting scandals, and (4) cultural differences resulting in the misapplication of its standards around the world. Such factors should be borne in mind when charting the next steps for the IASB and in evaluating the comparability and quality of accounts produced under IFRSs around the world.

Article
Publication date: 6 August 2020

Amy K. Lysak

This study aims to evaluate whether the Big-4’s commenting efforts influence the characteristics of Financial Accounting Standards Board’s (FASB’s) Final_Standards using…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to evaluate whether the Big-4’s commenting efforts influence the characteristics of Financial Accounting Standards Board’s (FASB’s) Final_Standards using the content of their comment letters. Whether auditors lobby standard-setters to help their clients or to help themselves and whether they are successful are questions highly relevant to issues of auditor independence and audit effectiveness.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on components of Mergenthaler (2009), this study develops a rules-based continuum change score to measure how much more (less) rules-based a Final_Standard is compared to its exposure draft to evaluate the influence of the Big-4 on the FASB’s standard-setting for 63 accounting standards.

Findings

The findings show that extensive comment letters and increased uncertainty language are associated with increases in the rules-based attributes included in Final_Standards. These results suggest the Big-4 prioritize a reduction in their own litigation risk over the possible preferences of their clients for less rigid standards. Moreover, the results are consistent with their comment letters influencing the FASB’s decision to include more rules-based attributes in Final_Standards.

Originality/value

This study develops a potential proxy for audit risk by assessing the changes in the rules-based characteristics of proposed accounting standards and using the content of the comment letters to evaluate whether the Big-4 accounting firms may influence the FASB’s Final_Standards. Overall, this study provides a unique perspective on the influence of constituents on the FASB’s standard-setting.

Details

Journal of Financial Reporting and Accounting, vol. 18 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1985-2517

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 10 June 2009

Joann Segovia, Vicky Arnold and Steve G. Sutton

Multiple stakeholders in the financial reporting process have articulated concerns over the rules-based orientation that U.S. accounting standards have adopted. Many argue…

Abstract

Multiple stakeholders in the financial reporting process have articulated concerns over the rules-based orientation that U.S. accounting standards have adopted. Many argue that a more principles-based approach to standards setting, typified by international accounting standards, would improve the quality of financial reporting and strengthen the auditor's position when dealing with client pressure, thereby enabling a focus on transparency and fairness of financial reports. In early 2009, the U.S. appeared poised to transition U.S. accounting standards to international accounting standards. The transition decision was made after the recommendations of the SEC Advisory Committee on Improvements to Financial Reporting (i.e., SEC Pozen Committee) publicly expressed strong support in its final report (SEC, 2008a). The SEC in turn issued its “Roadmap for the Potential Use of Financial Statements Prepared in Accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards by U.S. Issuers on November 14, 2008” (SEC, 2008b) outlining the transition procedures. However, with Shapiro taking over as chairperson of the SEC, this move now appears less likely pending a stronger review of how principles-based international standards may impact the strength of financial regulatory oversight – a potential delay met with disdain by the pro principles-based European regulatory community (Doran, 2009). While transition to international standards continues to progress, little research examining whether principles-based standards affect auditor decision-making has been conducted. The purpose of this study is to explore the impact of principles- vs. rules-based standards on auditors' willingness to allow preparers leeway in reporting practices and to consider how auditors' decision behavior is influenced by potential client pressure and/or opposing pressure from the SEC. Based on a sample of 114 experienced auditors, the results show that auditors are more willing to allow clients to manage earnings under rules-based standards; and, these results are persistent even under external pressure. Results also indicate that more experienced auditors are less willing to allow clients who exert high pressure to report earnings aggressively, while SEC pressure has more affect on less experienced auditors. These results provide important insights to the FASB, SEC, and IASB as they weigh arguments underlying the principles- vs. rules-based debate.

Details

Advances in Accounting Behavioral Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-739-0

Article
Publication date: 14 May 2019

Dennis Sundvik

The purpose of this paper is to explore whether principles-based vs rules-based accounting standards have an effect on measures of financial reporting quality and earnings…

1592

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore whether principles-based vs rules-based accounting standards have an effect on measures of financial reporting quality and earnings management strategies.

Design/methodology/approach

This study uses a firm-year-specific variable that captures the extent to which firms’ accounting and operating behavior is affected by the characteristics of a specific standard in the USA. Measures of absolute accruals, financial misconducts, signed abnormal accruals and abnormal cash flows are used to assess the effects.

Findings

The results show that absolute magnitude of accruals and probability of financial misconduct is lower, and accrual earnings management is higher when firms’ standards are more based on principles. The study also suggests that potentially costlier real earnings management is a consequence of rules-based standards.

Research limitations/implications

This study relies heavily on measures from the prior accounting literature, hence, care has been exercised in generalizing the findings.

Practical implications

This study has direct implications for a number of stakeholders, including standard setters, policymakers, securities regulators, researchers, investors, financial statement preparers and auditors. For example, the future development of accounting standards can be supported by the empirical conclusions in this study together with previous standard-setting ambitions, commentaries, experiments and analytical work.

Originality/value

This study extends prior single-country studies on reporting quality and cross-country studies on transition effects of firms switching from local to International Accounting Standards by observing the impact of accounting standard characteristics on additional measures of reporting quality and accrual as well as real earnings management when holding institutional factors constant. The study also offers archival evidence complementing prior commentaries, experiments and analytical work.

Details

Journal of Applied Accounting Research, vol. 20 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-5426

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 4 August 2021

Fei Song and Jianan Zhou

This paper addresses the role of principles-based accounting standards as a potential mechanism for reducing firms' time delay of annual reporting disclosure while…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper addresses the role of principles-based accounting standards as a potential mechanism for reducing firms' time delay of annual reporting disclosure while improving the timeliness of accounting information. The paper also contributes to the existing literature by addressing the mediating effects of the financial reporting complexity and the audit workload on the link between principles-based accounting standards and the time delay of annual reporting disclosure.

Design/methodology/approach

The focus is placed on an unbalanced panel of 20,943 samples over the period of 2007–2017.

Findings

The results show that the more principles-based the accounting standards are, the lower the time delay of annual reporting disclosure is, and the timelier the disclosure of accounting information is. The relationship between the two is more significant especially in the first two months after the end of the fiscal year. The findings are all robust after controlling for a series of sensitivity checks and endogenous concerns. From the mediating effect results, the authors find that principles-based accounting standards decrease the financial reporting complexity and the audit workload which in turn can help lower time delay of annual reporting disclosure. In addition, the negative effect of principles-based accounting standards on the time delay of annual reporting disclosure is more significant in the case that the company has “good news” including with no losses and receiving the standard auditing opinions. The results confirm the law of “good news announces early, bad news announces late.” Furthermore, the moderating effect results show that the higher the economic policy uncertainty index and the legal environment index, the lower the benefit of principles-based accounting standards to the timeliness of annual reports. The results of the economic consequences of timeliness suggest that the timely disclosure of accounting reporting will bring greater market reaction and contain more information, and the information of companies that disclose annual reports timely are more transparent.

Originality/value

This paper studies the impact of accounting standards on the timeliness of annual report disclosure, which enriches the literature in the field of macro policies and micro-enterprise behaviors.

Details

Asian Review of Accounting, vol. 29 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1321-7348

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 10 February 2020

Mahmut Sami Öztürk and Hayrettin Usul

The change of production methods, the industrial revolutions, technological developments, and digital transformation have affected almost all functions in the enterprises…

Abstract

The change of production methods, the industrial revolutions, technological developments, and digital transformation have affected almost all functions in the enterprises. Accounting and auditing areas are also quite affected by this transformation. Another important result of technology and digitalization is the rapid increase in errors, frauds, and irregularities. Enterprises are looking for new solutions and investigations against irregularities and frauds. Audits for errors, frauds, or irregularities are among the interests of forensic accounting. Many methods are used to identify errors and frauds in the forensic accounting. However, it is inevitable that digital technologies should be utilized in forensic accounting applications as a result of the rapid spread of automation and computer programs in enterprises within the framework of digitalized business activities. Hence, enterprises will be able to get more effective results through computer programs and artificial intelligence in terms of fraud audit in forensic accounting. Expert system applications use artificial intelligence to enable computer programs to behave just like people. One of the most widely used, most easily applicable, and most understandable types of expert system is rule-based expert system. The aim of this study is to determine the accounting fraud that may occur in enterprises within the framework of forensic accounting through rule-based expert systems. For this purpose, various applications have been implemented in a large-scale production enterprise through the use of rule-based expert systems for the determination of accounting fraud. Benford’s Law, risk levels, and various other criteria were used in the creation of expert systems. According to the results obtained from the study, it has been seen that by means of rule-based expert system applications, enterprises can better detect existing frauds and prevent further irregularities in the future. The study is important and it is expected that the study will contribute to the literature because it is shown in the study that the rule-based expert systems, applied in many fields under the title of social sciences, can also be applied in the field of forensic accounting and auditing.

Details

Contemporary Issues in Audit Management and Forensic Accounting
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-636-0

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 September 2022

Shungen Luo and Fei Song

This study tests the effect of accounting standards precision on financial restatements and the influence of accounting standards precision on different types of…

Abstract

Purpose

This study tests the effect of accounting standards precision on financial restatements and the influence of accounting standards precision on different types of restatements (including errors and irregularities). What is more, the heterogeneity between accounting standards precision and financial restatements is verified in this paper. In the further analyses, the authors also examine the mediating roles and moderating roles on the correlation between accounting standards precision and financial restatements.

Design/methodology/approach

The focus is placed on an unbalanced panel of 18,766 samples over the period of 2007–2017.

Findings

The authors find that firms' restatements decrease when standards are more principles-based (low accounting standards precision). Especially, irregularities significantly decrease when firms' standards are more principles-based. What's more, the negative relationship between principles-based standards and restatements is more significant in “big four” accounting firms. Moreover, from the mediating effect results, the authors find that low accounting standards precision decreases a firm's financial reporting complexity and increases equity restriction, which in turn can help decreasing its financial misreporting. From the moderating effect results, the authors find that the higher the TOP1 and the more analysts following the firm, the higher the benefit of accounting standards precision to misstatements.

Originality/value

The results of this study provide a theoretical reference for accounting standard setters and are helpful to inform investors and regulators about the influence of Chinese accounting standards on restatements.

Details

Asian Review of Accounting, vol. 30 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1321-7348

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 20 May 2011

Martin T. Stuebs and C. William Thomas

According to the SEC, the proposed roadmap for adopting principles-based International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) is still a priority. The adoption of IFRS will…

Abstract

According to the SEC, the proposed roadmap for adopting principles-based International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) is still a priority. The adoption of IFRS will ultimately demand greater emphasis on practitioner judgment (Mintz, 2010). This chapter focuses on the need for building the judgment skills of the practitioner. Our methodology follows a three-step process. We start with accounting standards, reviewing similarities and differences between “rules-based” and “principles-based” standards and conclude that, while applying any standard requires judgment, applying principles-based standards requires more judgment. We then focus on preparer incentives that can influence this requisite judgment. We use the “fraud triangle” to analyze the influence of incentives on judgment under each standards setting approach. Our third and most important step involves equipping practitioners to make judgments in the presence of incentives. We present and discuss a model that considers economic, social (legal), and ethical dimensions for making principled judgments in the presence of incentives and advocate-improved education for accountants in implementing that model.

Details

Research on Professional Responsibility and Ethics in Accounting
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-005-6

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 6 December 2018

Shaomin Li, Seung Ho Park and Rosey Shuji Bao

The purpose of this paper is to use the framework of rule-based and relation-based governance to examine the evolution of governance environment in the East Asian region…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to use the framework of rule-based and relation-based governance to examine the evolution of governance environment in the East Asian region including China, South Korea and Taiwan.

Design/methodology/approach

Both qualitative and quantitative evidences are presented to demonstrate the paths these East Asian countries take in their transitions from relation-based governance to rule-based governance. Based on the framework, this analysis sheds light on the debate on whether East Asian economies will eventually move away from relation-based governance to rule-based societies.

Findings

The authors find that relation-based governance has helped East Asian countries achieve rapid economic growth in the early stages of their development. However, as the scale and scope of East Asian economies expand, continuing to rely on it may hinder their further development and therefore these countries should adopt a rule-based governance system in order to be efficient and competitive in the world market. While South Korea and Taiwan have made substantial progress in this transition, China has just embarked on the process.

Originality/value

This paper is among the first to systematically review the theories and evidence of the transition and the challenges East Asian countries face during the process.

Details

International Journal of Emerging Markets, vol. 14 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-8809

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 20 January 2010

Steven M. Mintz

This chapter explores the link between virtue and representational faithfulness in making judgments in a principles-based environment. The motivation for the chapter is…

Abstract

This chapter explores the link between virtue and representational faithfulness in making judgments in a principles-based environment. The motivation for the chapter is the impending adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) in the United States and its principles-based approach to accounting. Even in a rules-based system, there are principles that provide a foundation for making decisions about the selection and implementation of accounting standards, financial statement presentation, estimates, and the sufficiency of evidence. A model is presented that reflects these judgments informed by virtue considerations that support substance over form decisions and a true and fair view. Implications for accounting education are discussed including the readiness of faculty to incorporate IFRS into the curriculum.

Details

Research on Professional Responsibility and Ethics in Accounting
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-722-6

1 – 10 of over 3000