This study investigates auditors’ propensity to rely on quantitative materiality thresholds to the exclusion of qualitative materiality thresholds. Specifically, we examine whether auditors are more likely to allow earnings management that is less than typical quantitative materiality thresholds but that nonetheless is qualitatively material. We use changes in tax expense as a proxy for earnings management. Our results indicate that companies with pre-managed earnings that would have missed the consensus analyst forecast are more likely to decrease their tax expense when the magnitude of the decrease is less than quantitative audit materiality thresholds. The results also indicate that firms are more likely to meet or beat the forecast when the amount of earnings management necessary to meet the analyst forecast is less than quantitative materiality. These results are consistent with auditors relying on quantitative materiality thresholds to the exclusion of qualitative materiality thresholds, i.e., the importance of meeting or beating the analyst forecast. Finally, we find that the ability to use tax expense reduction within quantitative materiality to meet or beat analysts’ consensus forecasts was significantly reduced by the SEC’s guidance on materiality in SAB-99 and by the passage of the Sarbanes–Oxley Act.
Review of Accounting Studies – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 22, 2012
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera