Articles scientifiques

Accounting for business combinations: Do purchase price allocations matter?


Journal of Accounting and Public Policy

2015, vol. 34, n°4, pp.362-391

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion

Accounting for Quality: On the relationship between accounting and quality improvement in the UK National Health Service


BMC Health Services Research

2015, vol. 15, n°1, pp.178-211

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion

Mots clés : Quality Quality improvement Accounting Measurement Patient survey

BackgroundAccounting-that is, standardized measurement, public reporting, performance evaluation and managerial control-is commonly seen to provide the core infrastructure for quality improvement in healthcare. Yet, accounting successfully for quality has been a problematic endeavor, often producing dysfunctional effects. This has raised questions about the appropriate role for accounting in achieving quality improvement. This paper contributes to this debate by contrasting the specific way in which accounting is understood and operationalized for quality improvement in the UK National Health Service (NHS) with findings from the broadly defined ‘social studies of accounting’ literature and illustrative examples.DiscussionThis paper highlights three significant differences between the way that accounting is understood to operate in the dominant health policy discourse and recent healthcare reforms, and in the social studies of accounting literature. It shows that accounting does not just find things out, but makes them up. It shows that accounting is not simply a matter of substance, but of style. And it shows that accounting does not just facilitate, but displaces, control.SummaryThe illumination of these differences in the way that accounting is conceptualized helps to diagnose why accounting interventions often fail to produce the quality improvements that were envisioned. This paper concludes that accounting is not necessarily incompatible with the ambition of quality improvement, but that it would need to be understood and operationalized in new ways in order to contribute to this end. Proposals for this new way of advancing accounting are discussed. They include the cultivation of overlapping and even conflicting measures of quality, the evaluation of accounting regimes in terms of what they do to practice, and the development of distinctively skeptical calculative culture

Are We Lost in Translation? The Impact of Using Translated IFRS on Decision-Making


Accounting in Europe

2015, vol. 12, n°1, pp.107-125

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion, GREGHEC (CNRS)

Mots clés : Translation, Language, Decision-making

International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) are issued in English and subsequently translated into a multitude of languages to make them accessible to non-English-speaking IFRS users. In an international work context, IFRS users apply either the original English version or a translated version of an IFRS standard to input information presented in different languages. While research has reported numerous challenges inherent in IFRS translation, we know very little about the actual impact of using different languages on decision-making. Based on a series of 2 × 2 between-subjects experiments with German students who possessed different levels of accounting knowledge, we investigate the influence of language on decision-making. Our experimental manipulations entail the language of the accounting standard used (English vs. German) and the language of the input case information (English vs. German). Our German participants made decisions about a series of cases relating to IAS 24 Related Party Disclosures. Based on an expert benchmark solution for the cases, we determine the quality of participants’ decisions. We find that the use of IAS 24 in the participants’ mother tongue (German) has a positive impact on decision-making quality. We also find some support for a positive influence of the native language of the input case information relative to English input case information. Moreover, participants’ accounting knowledge and English language skill are positively associated with decision-making quality

Boards’ Response to Shareholders’ Dissatisfaction: The Case of Shareholders’ Say on Pay in the UK


European Accounting Review

décembre 2015, vol. 24, n°4, pp.727-752

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion, GREGHEC (CNRS)

Mots clés : Executive compensation, Say-on-Pay, shareholders' vote, dissatisfaction

In 2002, the United Kingdom adopted a regulation allowing shareholders to cast non-binding (advisory) votes on their firm's Directors' Remuneration Report during annual general meetings (the 'Say-on-Pay' rule). This study evaluates a decade of this regulation and examines how it affected the behavior of shareholders and boards in a sample of FTSE 350 firms during the period 2002-2012. I find evidence that shareholder dissatisfaction increases with excess CEO compensation. This relationship does not exist for the expected level of compensation, suggesting that shareholders take a sophisticated approach when casting their vote. Boards do not appear to respond to shareholder dissatisfaction systematically, however they do respond selectively by reducing the excessiveness of CEO compensation when performance is poor. Boards also seem to respond swiftly to shareholder dissatisfaction. There is evidence that the probability of CEO turnover increases with shareholder dissatisfaction. Overall, the evidence suggests that 'Say-on-Pay' regulation addressed regulatory concerns about transparency, accountability, and performance linkage

Default clauses in debt contracts


Review of Accounting Studies

décembre 2015, vol. 20, n°4, pp.1596-1637

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion, GREGHEC (CNRS)

Mots clés : Events of default, Default clauses, Loan contracts, Bond contracts, Cross-default

We examine the determinants of events of default clauses in syndicated loan and bond contracts, provisions that allow lenders to request the repayment of principal and to terminate lending commitments. We document significant variation in the use of default clauses and their restrictiveness within the same type of lending contract but also across loans and bonds. We find that default clauses in public bond contracts are less restrictive than those in syndicated loan contracts. We also document that two ex ante proxies for bankruptcy costs, the level of intangible assets and capitalized research and development expenditures at the time of debt contracting, are associated with less restrictive default clauses, especially in bond contracts. We conclude that bondholders attempt to mitigate the occurrence of inefficient defaults. Given their inability to coordinate with each other and their ownership of subordinated claims, bondholders incur higher default costs than bank lenders