Is There an Association Between Earnings Management and Auditor-Provided Tax Services?
Posted: 11 Feb 2011
Date Written: February 9, 2011
The issue of whether auditor-provided nonaudit services enhance or exacerbate financial reporting quality has been intensely debated among the regulators, auditors, investors, academic researchers, and the media. In 2006, the SEC approved the rules proposed by the PCAOB limiting the tax services that incumbent auditors can offer to their clients. We contribute to this debate by examining whether auditor-provided tax services mitigate earnings management. We find a negative and significant relation between earnings management (loss avoidance) and tax fee paid to the incumbent auditor. Our results are consistent with knowledge spillover, i.e., when the same audit firm provides both audit and tax services insight learned from providing tax services can contribute to audit quality.
Keywords: Knowledge Spillover, Loss Avoidance, Tax Fee, Tax Avoidance
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