Earnings Comovement and Accounting Comparability: The Effects of Mandatory IFRS Adoption
55 Pages Posted: 15 Sep 2010 Last revised: 15 Aug 2016
Date Written: September 14, 2010
We examine changes in cross-country financial statement comparability around mandatory IFRS adoption and the effects of these changes on firms’ information environments, as captured by analyst properties and bid-ask spreads. First, we show that cross-country earnings comovement is negatively associated with favorable properties of the firm-level information environment. In contrast, we show that cross-country accounting comparability is positively associated with favorable properties of the information environment. We further document that, whereas IFRS adoption increased cross-country earnings comovement, it did not increase accounting comparability relative to a control sample of non-adopting firms. Finally, we show directly that the increases in earnings comovement experienced by IFRS adopters have negative effects on firms’ information environments. This finding provides novel evidence that increases in earnings comovement associated with IFRS adoption diminished financial statement users’ ability to extract information from cross-country firm comparisons.
Keywords: Accounting, IFRS, Regulation, Comparability
JEL Classification: G15, G38, M41
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation