Accounting Information Quality and CDS Term Structure
43 Pages Posted: 28 Jul 2016 Last revised: 7 Feb 2022
Date Written: April 4, 2018
We empirically examine the relationship between accounting information quality and the term structure of credit default swap (CDS) spreads. To do so, we capitalize on Flatness—a market-driven and theoretically motivated measure of information quality, which we construct as the ratio of short-term to long-term CDS spreads. Our evidence indicates that Flatness reflects accounting information quality as follows: (i) it increases when the analysts’ consensus earnings forecast is likely achieved via accruals management; (ii) earnings response coefficients decrease in Flatness; and (iii) the predictability of earnings for future cash flow decreases in Flatness. Our findings indicate that Flatness correlates predictably with the quality of accounting information, offering support for Duffie and Lando’s (2001) theory and subsequent research that builds on it.
Keywords: accounting information quality, credit default swaps, term structure, meeting or beating analysts’ consensus, earnings management, ERC, the predictive ability of earnings
JEL Classification: D80, G10, M41
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation