Detailed management earnings forecasts: do analysts listen?

Detailed management earnings forecasts: do analysts listen? We provide archival evidence on how a particular type of supplementary information affects the credibility of management earnings forecasts. Managers often provide detailed forecasts of specific income statement line items to shed light on how they plan to achieve their bottom-line earnings targets. We assess the effect of this forecast disaggregation on the credibility of management earnings forecasts. Based on a relatively large hand-collected sample of 900 management earnings forecasts, we find that disaggregation increases analysts’ sensitivity to the news in managers’ earnings guidance, suggesting that analysts find the guidance more credible. More importantly, we identify several factors that influence this relation. First, disaggregation plays a more important role when earnings are otherwise more difficult to forecast. Second, disaggregation is more important after Regulation Fair Disclosure prohibited selective disclosure, especially for firms that were more affected because they had previously provided more private guidance. Finally, in contrast to common assertions in the prior literature, we find that, in more recent years, disaggregation matters more for guidance that conveys bad news. Managers as well as researchers should be interested in evidence suggesting that financial analysts find disaggregation especially helpful in contexts where managers’ credibility is particularly important. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Review of Accounting Studies Springer Journals

Detailed management earnings forecasts: do analysts listen?

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Publisher
Springer US
Copyright
Copyright © 2012 by Springer Science+Business Media New York
Subject
Economics / Management Science; Accounting/Auditing; Finance/Investment/Banking; Public Finance & Economics
ISSN
1380-6653
eISSN
1573-7136
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11142-012-9214-7
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

We provide archival evidence on how a particular type of supplementary information affects the credibility of management earnings forecasts. Managers often provide detailed forecasts of specific income statement line items to shed light on how they plan to achieve their bottom-line earnings targets. We assess the effect of this forecast disaggregation on the credibility of management earnings forecasts. Based on a relatively large hand-collected sample of 900 management earnings forecasts, we find that disaggregation increases analysts’ sensitivity to the news in managers’ earnings guidance, suggesting that analysts find the guidance more credible. More importantly, we identify several factors that influence this relation. First, disaggregation plays a more important role when earnings are otherwise more difficult to forecast. Second, disaggregation is more important after Regulation Fair Disclosure prohibited selective disclosure, especially for firms that were more affected because they had previously provided more private guidance. Finally, in contrast to common assertions in the prior literature, we find that, in more recent years, disaggregation matters more for guidance that conveys bad news. Managers as well as researchers should be interested in evidence suggesting that financial analysts find disaggregation especially helpful in contexts where managers’ credibility is particularly important.

Journal

Review of Accounting StudiesSpringer Journals

Published: Dec 28, 2012

References

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