The roles of independent non-executive directors and dual CEO/Chairman in quality of corporate reporting (earnings management and voluntary disclosure) [electronic resource] : Hong Kong evidence

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The roles of independent non-executive directors and dual CEO/Chairman in quality of corporate reporting (earnings management and voluntary disclosure) [electronic resource] : Hong Kong evidence

 

Author: Lam, Kit Lan Cynthia
Title: The roles of independent non-executive directors and dual CEO/Chairman in quality of corporate reporting (earnings management and voluntary disclosure) [electronic resource] : Hong Kong evidence
Degree: D.B.A.
Year: 2007
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Outside directors of corporations -- hina -- Hong Kong
Chief executive officers -- China -- Hong Kong
Corporation reports -- China -- Hong Kong
Department: Graduate School of Business
Pages: 132 p.
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b2335726
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/6564
Abstract: This study investigates whether multiple corporate governance characteristics (number of independent non-executive directors on the board and the Chairman and CEO being the same person/different persons) have implications on the quality of corporate reporting (as measured by the extent of earnings management and the level of voluntary disclosures) in Hong Kong. The results are supported by an earnings management sample of 2,143 Hong Kong listed companies for the three years period (2003-2005) and a voluntary disclosure sample of 9l Hong Kong listed companies for the year 2005. My findings show companies with more independent non-executive directors ("INED") are more likely to voluntarily disclose, thus generally supporting the Listing Rules requirements to further promote representation of more INED on the boards of Hong Kong listed companies. However, my findings also show that more INED on the board is positively associated with higher earnings management, contrary to my hypothesis that these directors monitor and control for earnings management and thus should be negatively associated with earnings management. Perhaps this is because "independence" of the INED is in doubt, or that INED's monitoring role towards management's behavior is not what is generally assumed? Perhaps INED's increased presence in the board lead to management's continuous efforts towards massaging/smoothing earnings similarly to what has been done historically, to ensure consistency and hopefully to avoid queries from INED? The other findings of this study are that companies with CEO and Chairman being the same person are i) less likely to voluntarily disclose and ii) are associated with higher earnings management. These results support the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong to further strengthen its Code on Corporate Governance Practices (the "Code"). Instead of a mere recommendation for the separation of the two as a best practice in the Code, the Stock Exchange may consider requiring the separation of CEO and Chairman as two persons on a compulsory basis. To my knowledge, this is the first study linking quality of corporate reporting with multiple corporate governance mechanisms in the Hong Kong context. In addition it is one of the few studies in Hong Kong that utilizes both quantitative and qualitative methodologies.

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