Date of Degree
PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)
W. Bruce Johnson
This study adds to the earnings guidance debate by investigating whether quarterly guidance is related to two forms of earnings management: (1) benchmark beating and (2) accounting irregularities. Using a post-Regulation Fair Disclosure sample, I find that firms regularly issuing earnings guidance display a discontinuity around zero in their distribution of management forecast errors and a larger discontinuity in their distribution of analyst forecast errors compared to non-guiding firms. Multivariate tests reveal that guiding firms recognize large abnormal accruals to beat their own guidance, but not to beat analyst forecasts, whereas non-guiding firms do recognize large abnormal accruals to beat analyst forecasts. Overall, guiding firms and non-guiding firms use similar levels of abnormal accruals to beat benchmarks. I also find no statistical relation between quarterly guidance and the likelihood of accounting irregularities. In sum, the evidence shows that while guiding firms and non-guiding firms manage earnings to different benchmarks, they are similar in terms of their aggregate earnings management.
Copyright 2011 Andrew Acito
Acito, Andrew Alexei. "Does quarterly earnings guidance increase or reduce earnings management?." doctoral dissertation, University of Iowa, 2011.