Impact of IFRS Transition on Audit and Non-Audit Fees: Evidence from Small and Medium-Sized Listed Companies in Finland

43 Pages Posted: 4 Jun 2009

See all articles by Hannu J. Schadewitz

Hannu J. Schadewitz

Turku School of Economics at the University of Turku - Department of Accounting & Finance

Markku J. Vieru

University of Lapland - Faculty of Social Sciences, Multidimensional Tourism Institute

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Date Written: June 2, 2009

Abstract

This study focuses on fees paid to auditors during a major accounting change. Specifically, we analyse how a major accounting change, associated with extra audit risk and work, from local GAAP to IFRS (International Financial Reporting Standards) affects audit and non-audit fees paid to auditors. Prior research had evidenced that several auditee-specific properties are associated with audit fees. However, there is lack of specific knowledge on how a major accounting change affects audit and, especially, non-audit fees. Our sample comprises Finnish listed firms that adopt IFRS for the first-time. The Finnish data are employed since prior research findings suggest that there are large differences between Finnish Accounting Standards (FAS) and IFRS anticipating extra audit risk and work at the accounting move. Therefore, it is highly likely that extensive supply for audit and non-audit services during the transition from FAS to IFRS would occur. When taking into account several control variables in line with prior research, our analyses based on unique, hand-collected data provides evidence that a company with a high FAS-IFRS disparity is associated with more costly non-audit services during the transition phase than one with low disparity. Furthermore, the results reveal that audit fees are not significantly related to the magnitude of IFRS adjustments. Overall, the research findings inform, among other things, audit firms and their clients about the type and the level of costs incurred during a major accounting change.

Keywords: audit supply, non-audit fees, audit fees, IFRS, transition

JEL Classification: M44, M49, M47

Suggested Citation

Schadewitz, Hannu J. and Vieru, Markku, Impact of IFRS Transition on Audit and Non-Audit Fees: Evidence from Small and Medium-Sized Listed Companies in Finland (June 2, 2009). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1413120 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1413120

Hannu J. Schadewitz

Turku School of Economics at the University of Turku - Department of Accounting & Finance ( email )

Rehtorinpellonkatu 3
FIN-20500 Turku
Finland
+358 2 333 9321 (Phone)
+358 2 333 9350 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.utu.fi/en/people/hannu-schadewitz

Markku Vieru (Contact Author)

University of Lapland - Faculty of Social Sciences, Multidimensional Tourism Institute ( email )

P.O. Box 122
Rovaniemi FIN-96101
Finland
+358 400 377641 (Phone)
+358 16 341 2600 (Fax)

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