Transparency and Disclosure: Overview of Methodology and Study Results - United States
29 Pages Posted: 18 Aug 2003
Date Written: October 16, 2002
At a time when distrust of corporate management is at an all-time high and the media are increasing their focus on corporate governance, Standard & Poor's has published a study that examines the transparency and disclosure (T&D) practices of major public companies around the globe. This article describes how the Standard & Poor's T&D study was conducted and what the finding reveal, addressing such questions as: Which companies provide the most extensive disclosure in their basic corporate filings? Which companies disclose above and beyond what the law requires? Are there significant differences among the T&D practices of various regions and within regions? What is the significance of the T&D rankings? How can T&D be improved?
Standard & Poor's T&D rankings have a wide distribution across countries and regions and reveal some interesting findings about practices within and among the different countries and regions. For U.S. companies, there are significant differences in the amount of disclosure provided in annual reports. T&D rankings based on annual reports for the U.S. companies studies are correlated to the determinants of expected returns, such as market risk, size, and the price-to-book ratio.
Keywords: transparency, disclosure, corporate governance, risk premium, international markets
JEL Classification: G14, G34, M4, M41, M45, M47, K22, L20, N20
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