Discussion of “Why do pro forma and street earnings not reflect changes in GAAP? Evidence from SFAS 123R”

Discussion of “Why do pro forma and street earnings not reflect changes in GAAP? Evidence from... Barth et al. (Review of Accounting Studies, this issue, 2012) identify the perfect natural laboratory setting in which they explore important questions related to non-GAAP earnings disclosures. By focusing on a single income statement line item, stock compensation expense, they can directly compare the behavior of managers and analysts in excluding that item from GAAP earnings. Their empirical analyses indicate that managers exclude the expense for opportunistic reasons. They also conclude that analysts are more likely to exclude the expense in order to increase the predictability of current-period earnings for future earnings. I believe their evidence provides a solid contribution to the literature on non-GAAP reporting. Moreover, it provides important evidence regarding the effectiveness of SFAS 123R’s requirement for the recognition of stock compensation expense in providing relevant earnings information to stakeholders. I provide a few comments regarding aspects of the paper that require clarification or that may influence the design of future studies. Overall, I believe this research provides an important contribution to the non-GAAP literature and that it will have a significant influence on the design of future studies. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Review of Accounting Studies Springer Journals

Discussion of “Why do pro forma and street earnings not reflect changes in GAAP? Evidence from SFAS 123R”

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Springer US
Copyright © 2012 by Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
Business and Management; Accounting/Auditing; Corporate Finance; Public Finance
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