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http://ssrn.com/abstract=997483
 
 

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Predicting Material Accounting Misstatements


Patricia M. Dechow


University of California, Berkeley - Haas School of Business

Weili Ge


University of Washington - Michael G. Foster School of Business

Chad R. Larson


University of Houston - Department of Accountancy & Taxation

Richard G. Sloan


University of California at Berkeley - Haas School of Business

April 21, 2010

Contemporary Accounting Research, Forthcoming
AAA 2008 Financial Accounting and Reporting Section (FARS) Paper

Abstract:     
We examine 2,190 SEC Accounting and Auditing Enforcement Releases (AAERs) issued between 1982 and 2005. We obtain a comprehensive sample of firms that are alleged to have misstated their financial statements. We examine the characteristics of misstating firms along five dimensions: accrual quality, financial performance, non-financial measures, off-balance sheet activities, and market-based measures. We compare misstating firms to themselves during non-misstatement years and misstating firms to the broader population of all publicly listed firms. We find that managers appear to be hiding diminishing performance during misstatement years. We find that accruals are high and that misstating firms have a greater proportion of assets with valuations that are more subject to managerial discretion. In addition, the extent of leasing is increasing and there are abnormal reductions in the number of employees. Misstating firms are raising more financing, have higher price-to-fundamental ratios, and have strong prior stock price performance. We develop a model to predict accounting misstatements. The output of this model is a scaled logistic probability that we term the F-Score, where values greater than one suggest a greater likelihood of a misstatement.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 72

Keywords: earnings quality, accounting misstatement, fraud prediction, accrual quality, F-Score

JEL Classification: G34, M41

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Date posted: June 30, 2007 ; Last revised: May 24, 2010

Suggested Citation

Dechow, Patricia M. and Ge, Weili and Larson, Chad R. and Sloan, Richard G., Predicting Material Accounting Misstatements (April 21, 2010). Contemporary Accounting Research, Forthcoming; AAA 2008 Financial Accounting and Reporting Section (FARS) Paper. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=997483

Contact Information

Patricia M. Dechow (Contact Author)
University of California, Berkeley - Haas School of Business ( email )
545 Student Services Building, #1900
2220 Piedmont Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94720
United States
Weili Ge
University of Washington - Michael G. Foster School of Business ( email )
Box 353200
Seattle, WA 98195-3200
United States
Chad Russell Larson
University of Houston - Department of Accountancy & Taxation ( email )
Bauer College of Business
4800 Calhoun Road
Houston, TX 77204
United States
Richard G. Sloan
University of California at Berkeley - Haas School of Business ( email )
545 Student Services Building, #1900
2220 Piedmont Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94720
United States
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