Return to results
Journal articles (2023), Journal of Business Finance and Accounting, 50, pp. 598-621

Analyst independence and earnings management

Huang Zhongwei, Jeanjean Thomas, LUI Daphne

We examine whether analyst independence contributes to analysts’ monitoring role in deterring accruals earnings management. We first report a negative association between earnings management and the ratio of independent analysts to brokerage analysts covering a firm. Next, through the lens of the promotion of independent sell-side research institutions by the 2003 Global Research Analyst Settlement, we document a significant decrease in earnings management on firms affected by the Global Settlement's mandate for time-limited support to back independent research institutions. Additionally, we find that, as the aforementioned support ended, the extent of monitoring effectiveness reverted to a level indistinguishable from that before the Global Settlement. Finally, using closures and mergers of independent research institutions as a quasi-natural experiment, we provide corroborating evidence consistent with analyst independence leading to more effective monitoring. Link to the article

HUANG, Z., JEANJEAN, T. and LUI, D. (2023). Analyst independence and earnings management. Journal of Business Finance and Accounting, 50, pp. 598-621.