Early Annual Reports
52 Pages Posted: 24 Jul 2009 Last revised: 27 Nov 2015
Date Written: November 2015
Prior studies of annual report timing treat all reports filed before SEC deadlines as similar. We show this is not the case. Nearly 40 percent of 10-Ks are filed well in advance of SEC deadlines, and the propensity of early reporting continues to increase. We find that the firm characteristics associated with early reporting are distinct from those of firms that file on time, and are generally consistent with the costs and benefits of early reporting. We further document that early reports themselves are different from those filed on time. Early reports are less informative, more accurate and complete, and are more likely to be preempted by voluntary disclosures. This evidence indicates that early filers provide faithfully represented information that is preempted by other disclosures, and is inconsistent with regulators’ assumption that providing mandatory reports earlier enhances their decision usefulness. Overall, we find that early annual reports represent a distinct reporting option that has been largely unexplored in prior literature.
Keywords: disclosure; confirmation; audited financial reports; regulation; informativeness
JEL Classification: M41, M44, M45
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation