Effects of Comprehensive-Income Characteristics on Nonprofessional Investors' Judgments: The Role of Financial-Statement Format
48 Pages Posted: 27 Jun 2000
Date Written: December 1999
Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 130 requires companies to report comprehensive income in a primary financial statement, but allows its presentation in either a statement of comprehensive income or a statement of stockholders' equity. In an experiment, we examine whether and how alternative presentation formats affect nonprofessional investors' processing of comprehensive-income information, specifically, information disclosing the volatility of unrealized gains on available-for-sale securities. The results show that investors' judgments of corporate and management performance reflect the volatility of comprehensive income only when it is presented in a statement of comprehensive income. We provide evidence consistent with our psychology-based framework that these findings occur because format affects how nonprofessional investors weight comprehensive-income information and not whether they acquire this information or how they evaluate it.
Key Words: Comprehensive income; Nonprofessional investors; Presentation format; Volatility
JEL Classification: M41, M44
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation