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Title: Operational flexibility and earnings management : some evidence of the benefits of breadth and the costs of depth in multinational corporations
Other Titles: Tan xing jing ying ji ying yu guan li : kua guo qi ye zhi li yi kuan du ji cheng ben shen du
彈性經營及盈餘管理 : 跨國企業之利益寬度及成本深度
Authors: Bliss, Mark Anthony Gerard
Department: Dept. of Accountancy
Degree: Doctor of Philosophy
Issue Date: 2006
Publisher: City University of Hong Kong
Subjects: Corporate profits
International business enterprises
Notes: CityU Call Number: HG4028.P7 B58 2006
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 123-126)
Thesis (Ph.D.)--City University of Hong Kong, 2006
xi, 170 leaves ; 30 cm.
Type: Thesis
Abstract: This study investigates earnings management (proxied by discretionary accruals) within multinational corporations and how the structure of their overseas subsidiary network affects this association. Incentives for managers of these firms to manage earnings tested include (1) when the firm reported a loss in the previous financial year, (2) when the firm reported a loss in the previous financial year and also suffered a substantial share price decline over this same period, and (3) when the firm sought substantial financing either by increasing the value of shares outstanding by at least ten percent, or by increasing long-term debt by at least twenty percent. This study using a sample of S & P 1500 firms, for the years 2000, 2001 and these combined years, shows that that high depth firms (that have subsidiary networks that are highly concentrated in few countries) are significantly associated with higher levels of discretionary accruals (particularly income-increasing), and high breadth firms (that have subsidiary networks that operate in many countries but limit their concentration in any one country) have significantly lower levels of discretionary accruals. It is also found that high breadth firms have higher levels of accruals quality, as measured by the metric developed by Francis, LaFond, Olsson and Schipper (2005), that equates to these firms having higher predictability and less pricing uncertainty in the market. This evidence helps to further explain, and provides an earnings management explanation for the findings by Tang and Tikoo (1999) that high breadth multinational corporations have higher earnings response coefficients.
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