An International Perspective on Audit Report Lag: A Synthesis of the Literature and Opportunities for Future Research
28 Pages Posted: 22 May 2020
Date Written: March 2017
Audit report lag (ARL) is the length of time from a company's fiscal year‐end to the audit report date, and is often viewed as the most important financial reporting timeliness determinant. Given that timeliness is an area of interest to investors, managers, regulators, auditors and academics, an understanding of ARL determinants is extremely important. As financial markets become more globally oriented, an international understanding of ARL determinants becomes even more important. This paper summarizes the extant literature on ARL and its determinants with an emphasis on international literature. Our review categorizes prior research based on company‐specific and audit‐related factors, and explores the associations that have been identified with respect to ARL. Finally, we identify possible areas of interest not currently present in the literature and speculate on several opportunities for future research.
Keywords: Audit delay, audit report lag, financial reporting timeliness
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