'We are being Pilloried for Something, We Did Not Even Know We Had Done Wrong!' Quality Control and Orders of Worth in the British Audit Profession


Journal of Management Studies

juillet 2013, vol. 50, n°5, pp.845-869

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion

Mots clés : Audit profession, Boltanski, Institutional work, Quality control, Thévenot, United Kingdom

This paper contributes to the analysis of institutional work by looking at situations of perceived injustice that institutional change can create. To this end, the paper mobilizes the work of Boltanski and Thévenot on orders of worth to analyse the consequences for a professional body of a shift in institutional logics towards more accountability. The feeling of injustice experienced – and voiced – by some members of the largest British institute of auditors, the ICAEW, after it set up and operated a quality monitoring unit, serves to illustrate how change can turn awry when equity in a community of peers is threatened, and how institutional work can remedy such a situation by restoring a sense of worth in the community

Accounting and networks of corruption

D. Neu, J. Everett, A. Rahaman, D. E. MARTINEZ

Accounting Organizations and Society

août 2013, vol. 38, n°6-7, pp.505-524

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

Mots clés : Corruption, Social networks, Social services, Sociology, Social interaction, Program administration (Education)

This study examines the nature and role of accounting practices in a network of corruption in an influence-market setting. The study focuses on the Canadian government's Sponsorship Program (1994'2003), a national unification scheme that saw approximately $50 million diverted into the bank accounts of political parties, program administrators, and their families, friends and business colleagues. Relying on the institutional sociology of Bourdieu, the study demonstrates the precise role of accounting practices in the organization of a corrupt network imbued with a specific telos and certain accounting tasks. The study illustrates how accounting is accomplished and by whom, and it shows how the 'skillful use' of accounting practices and social interactions around these practices together enable corruption. In so doing, the study builds on a growing body of work examining criminogenic networks and the contextual, collaborative and systemic uses of accounting in such networks

Analyst coverage, earnings management and financial development: An international study

F. Degeorge, Y. Ding, T. Jeanjean, H. STOLOWY

Journal of Accounting and Public Policy

janvier-février 2013, vol. 32, n°1, pp.1-25

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

Using data from 21 countries, this paper analyzes the relation among analyst coverage, earnings management and financial development in an international context. We document that the effectiveness of financial analysts as monitors increases with a country’s financial development (FD). We find that in high-FD countries, increased within-firm analyst coverage results in less earnings management. Such is not the case in low-FD countries. Our results are economically significant and robust to reverse causality checks. Our findings illustrate one mechanism through which financial development mitigates the cost of monitoring firms and curbs earnings management.

Dirty work and the construction of identity. An ethnographic study of management accounting practices


Accounting Organizations and Society

avril 2013, vol. 38, n°3, pp.228-244

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion

Financial Statement Comparability and Credit Risk


Review of Accounting Studies

2013, vol. 18, n°3, pp.783-823

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion

Mots clés : Comparability Corporate credit risk Credit rating agency Bond market liquidity

Prior research shows that firms’ financial statement comparability improves the accuracy of market participants’ valuation judgments and thus may reduce firms’ costs of capital. Distinct from prior research focusing on the equity market, we develop measures of comparability relevant to debt market participants based on the within-industry variability of Moody’s adjustments to reported accounting numbers for the purposes of credit rating. We examine two sets of adjustments: (1) to the interest coverage ratio and (2) to non-recurring income items. We validate these comparability measures by providing evidence that greater comparability is associated with lower frequency and magnitude of split ratings by credit rating agencies. We predict and find that greater comparability is associated with (1) lower estimated bid-ask spreads for traded bonds, (2) lower credit spreads for both bonds and five-year credit default swaps, and (3) a steeper one- to five-year credit default swap term structure. Our results are consistent with financial statement comparability reducing debt market participants’ uncertainty about and pricing of firms’ credit risk

Firms' Use of Accounting Discretion to Influence Their Credit Ratings

W. M. ALISSA, K. Koharki, M. Penn, S. Bonsall

Journal of Accounting and Economics

avril-mai 2013, vol. 55, n°2-3, pp.129-147

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion

Mots clés : Credit rating agencies, Expected ratings, Earnings management, Accruals, Real activities

This paper examines whether firms that deviate from an empirically modeled ("expected") credit rating engage in earnings management activities, as measured by abnormal accruals and real activities earnings management. We then test whether such actions are successful in helping these firms move toward their expected credit ratings. We find evidence that firms that engage in income-increasing (-decreasing) earnings management activities and are below (above) expected ratings achieve future upgrades (downgrades). These results suggest that firms below or above their expected credit ratings may be able to move toward expected ratings through the use of directional earnings management

Joint Audit: Issues and Challenges for Researchers and Policy-Makers


Accounting in Europe

2013, vol. 10, n°2, pp.175-199

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion

The publication of the European Commission Green Paper, ‘Audit Policy: Lessons from the Crisis’ in October 2010, has stirred up a lively debate on the role of joint audits. This literature review identifies and evaluates, for the benefit of future research and regulators, existing evidence about joint audits. We find limited empirical support to suggest that joint audits lead to increased audit quality, but some empirical support to suggest that joint audits lead to additional costs. Overall, this paper indicates that joint audit should be seen as a mechanism that is embedded in a broader institutional context and not be considered in isolation from other factors that might impact the audit market. The results indicate that various country-level characteristics are simultaneously at play. While joint audits can potentially enhance the audit market competition by allowing smaller audit firms to maintain larger market shares, the related impact on audit quality has not yet been clearly demonstrated and thus provides a promising avenue for future research

Le rôle de la labellisation dans la construction d’un marché: Le cas de l’ISR en France [The role of labellisation in the design of a market: The case of SRI in France]


Revue Française de Gestion

octobre 2013, vol. 39, n°236, pp.93-107

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion

Mots clés : Industrial organization (Economic theory), Investments - Moral & ethical aspects, Labeling services, Finance, Insurance, Banking Industry, Assets (Accounting)

L'investissement socialement responsable (ISR) en France reste peu développé pour les investisseurs particuliers, en dépit d'une croissance forte des fonds ISR et du lancement de labels à leur intention. L'objectif de cet article est de mieux comprendre le rôle limité des labels. L'analyse s'appuie sur l'interaction entre trois éléments : label et asymétrie d'information, choix des attributs informationnels des labels et objectifs des organismes porteurs de labellisation, concurrence induite entre labels. Deux facteurs expliquent l'impact limité des labels. D'une part, les attributs informationnels mis en évidence par les labels reflètent plus le point de vue des sociétés de gestion que celui des investisseurs particuliers. D'autre part, la distribution de l'ISR auprès des particuliers passe majoritairement par les réseaux des banques et assurances, réseaux pour lesquels l'ISR ne constitue pas un véritable axe de différenciation concurrentielle

Les auditeurs financiers face aux conflits d'agence : une étude des déterminants des honoraires d'audit en France / Financial auditors facing agency conflicts : an audit fees determinants study in France

C. Ben Ali, C. LESAGE

Comptabilité Contrôle Audit

avril 2013, vol. 19, n°1, pp.59-89

Départements : Comptabilité et Contrôle de Gestion

Mots clés : Audit fees, Actionnaire de contrôle, Conflit d'agence, Expropriation des minoritaires, Honoraires d'audit, Audit fees, Controlling Shareholders, Minority expropriation, Agency conflict

Considérant l'audit des états financiers comme un mécanisme de réduction des asymétries d'information, nous pouvons supposer que les conlits d'agence infuencent les honoraires d'audit. En examinant les honoraires d'audit des sociétés du SBF 250, nos résultats montrent : 1) l'absence de relation significative entre la propriété managériale et les honoraires d'audit; 2) une relation non linéaire en U inversé entre les honoraires d'audit et la propriété des actionnaires de contrôle ; 3) une relation négative entre le contrôle familial et les honoraires d'audit. Ces résultats mettent en évidence la prédominance en France des conflits d'agence entre actionnaires de contrôle et actionnaires minoritaires, contrairement aux pays anglo-saxons où prédomine le conflit entre dirigeants et actionnaires. L'étude permet de tirer des enseignements utiles pour les praticiens et les régulateurs

Risque d’estimation, coût du capital et communication des tests de dépréciation


Finance Contrôle Stratégie

2013, vol. 16, n°1, pp.2-20

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

Mots clés : coût du capital, risque d’estimation, information prospective vs descriptive, IAS 36 / equity cost of capital, estimation risk, prospective vs descriptive disclosures, IAS36

Le coût du capital est traditionnellement perçu comme une fonction croissante du risqued’estimation de la distribution des flux de trésorerie futurs (FTF) dégagés par les sociétés. En référentiel international, l’information communiquée au titre des tests de dépréciation en IAS 36 permet aux sociétés cotées de transmettre au marché des indications de premier ordre sur les risques liés à leurs FTF. A partir d’un échantillon de sociétés du SBF120 constitué au cours de la période 2006-2008, nous mettons en évidence une association négative entre cette communication et le coût du capital. En outre, en isolant l’information prospective de l’information descriptive, nous montrons que seul le premier type d’information véhicule de l’information pertinente pour les investisseurs