This study investigates how a tax agency would assess the liability of a taxpayer who has first adopted a new, controversial tax‐saving scheme, which might be employed by…
This study investigates how a tax agency would assess the liability of a taxpayer who has first adopted a new, controversial tax‐saving scheme, which might be employed by other taxpayers. The tax agency’s post‐audit assessment to the first taxpayer influences whether and how the innovation will diffuse among taxpayers. We find that it is optimal for the tax agency to settle the issue regardless of whether and how fast the innovation diffuses. A trial is too costly an option for the agency: losing in court would make the innovation public knowledge, and other taxpayers would immediately adopt the new scheme. Neither the number of other taxpayers nor the speed of diffusion affects the amount of the optimal post‐audit assessment. These results suggest that a tax practitioner who markets a new tax‐saving scheme need not limit the speed of diffusion for fear of an aggressive response from the agency.
In Korea, a regulatory body can assign auditors to firms if they possess certain characteristics that cast doubt on auditor independence or the reliability of accounting disclosures. This paper investigates whether such mandatory assignment of auditors improves investors’ perceptions of the quality of accounting information. Using over 4,000 firm‐year observations from 1994 to 2002, we find that investors respond more favorably to positive earnings audited by assigned auditors than to those audited by non‐assigned auditors. Negative earnings, however, do not lead to significantly different reactions. Capital market participants respond more favorably to the book value of equity audited by assigned auditors than to that audited by non‐assigned auditors.