Do Investors Care about the Auditor's Economic Dependence on the Client? *

Do Investors Care about the Auditor's Economic Dependence on the Client? * In this study, we investigate whether investor perceptions of the financial reporting credibility of Big 5 audits are related to the auditor's economic dependence on the client as measured by nonaudit as well as total (audit and nonaudit) fees paid to the incumbent auditor. We use the client‐specific ex ante cost of equity capital as a proxy for investor perceptions of financial reporting credibility and examine auditor fees both as a proportion of the revenues of the audit firm and as a proportion of the revenues of the audit firm's practice office through which the audit was conducted. Our findings suggest that both nonaudit and total fees are perceived negatively by investors' that is, the higher the fees paid to the auditor, the greater the implied threat to auditor independence, and the lower the financial reporting credibility of a Big 5 audit. Furthermore, our findings appear to be largely unrelated to corporate governance: investors do not perceive the auditor as compensating for weak governance. Separately, recent anecdotal evidence suggests that declining revenues from nonaudit services' as a result of recent regulatory restrictions” are being offset by substantial increases in audit fees. Other things being equal, rising audit fees imply higher profit margins for audit services, indicating that the audit function may no longer be a loss leader. Thus, to the extent that investors perceive total fees negatively, recent regulatory initiatives to limit nonaudit fees may not have adequately addressed the perceived, if not the actual, threat to auditor independence posed by fees. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Contemporary Accounting Research Wiley

Do Investors Care about the Auditor's Economic Dependence on the Client? *

Loading next page...
 
/lp/wiley/do-investors-care-about-the-auditor-s-economic-dependence-on-the-KqG2KbDf7L
Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
2006 Canadian Academic Accounting Association
ISSN
0823-9150
eISSN
1911-3846
D.O.I.
10.1506/D171-8534-4458-K037
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

In this study, we investigate whether investor perceptions of the financial reporting credibility of Big 5 audits are related to the auditor's economic dependence on the client as measured by nonaudit as well as total (audit and nonaudit) fees paid to the incumbent auditor. We use the client‐specific ex ante cost of equity capital as a proxy for investor perceptions of financial reporting credibility and examine auditor fees both as a proportion of the revenues of the audit firm and as a proportion of the revenues of the audit firm's practice office through which the audit was conducted. Our findings suggest that both nonaudit and total fees are perceived negatively by investors' that is, the higher the fees paid to the auditor, the greater the implied threat to auditor independence, and the lower the financial reporting credibility of a Big 5 audit. Furthermore, our findings appear to be largely unrelated to corporate governance: investors do not perceive the auditor as compensating for weak governance. Separately, recent anecdotal evidence suggests that declining revenues from nonaudit services' as a result of recent regulatory restrictions” are being offset by substantial increases in audit fees. Other things being equal, rising audit fees imply higher profit margins for audit services, indicating that the audit function may no longer be a loss leader. Thus, to the extent that investors perceive total fees negatively, recent regulatory initiatives to limit nonaudit fees may not have adequately addressed the perceived, if not the actual, threat to auditor independence posed by fees.

Journal

Contemporary Accounting ResearchWiley

Published: Dec 1, 2006

References

You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.


DeepDyve is your
personal research library

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

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Search

Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly

Organize

Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.

Access

Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

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.

See the journals in your area

DeepDyve

Freelancer

DeepDyve

Pro

Price

FREE

$49/month
$360/year

Save searches from
Google Scholar,
PubMed

Create folders to
organize your research

Export folders, citations

Read DeepDyve articles

Abstract access only

Unlimited access to over
18 million full-text articles

Print

20 pages / month

PDF Discount

20% off