The Impact of Information Processing Costs on Firm Disclosure Choice: Evidence from the XBRL Mandate
Posted: 6 Oct 2019
Date Written: September 1, 2019
This paper examines the effect of market participants’ information processing costs on firms’ disclosure choice. Using the recent eXtensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) regulation, I find that firms increase their quantitative footnote disclosures upon implementation of XBRL detailed tagging requirements designed to reduce information users’ processing costs. These results hold in a difference-in-difference design using matched nonadopting firms as controls, as well as two additional identification strategies. Examination of the disclosure increase by footnote type suggests that both regulatory and nonregulatory market participants play a role in monitoring firm disclosures. Overall, these findings suggest that the processing costs of market participants can be significant enough to impact firms’ disclosure decisions.
Keywords: information processing costs; disclosure; XBRL
JEL Classification: D83; M41; M48; O33
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