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Determinants and Consequences of a Voluntary Turn Away from IFRS to Local GAAP : Evidence from Switzerland


Fiechter, Peter; Halberkann, Jérome; Meyer, Conrad (2012). Determinants and Consequences of a Voluntary Turn Away from IFRS to Local GAAP : Evidence from Switzerland. Working Paper Series 1, University of Zurich.

Abstract

This paper investigates the causes and economic consequences of a voluntary turn away from IFRS to Swiss GAAP. As firms are permitted to switch from IFRS to Swiss GAAP in Switzerland, we can exploit this unique setting to analyze the reasons of a turn away, the changes in reporting, and its capital market effects. Prior literature on IFRS adoption (and other disclosure literature) generally finds a decrease in information asymmetry with increasing levels of disclosure. Accordingly, turning away from IFRS should increase the information asymmetry. However, our empirical results from a difference-in-differences design do not support this prediction. We interpret this finding as evidence that the disclosure level of Swiss GAAP is sufficient to meet the demand for disclosure of the switching firms’ investors. By providing evidence that—for certain firms—a switch away from IFRS does not necessarily induce negative economic consequences, the findings contribute to the current discussion on whether IFRS fits for small- and medium-sized firms.

Abstract

This paper investigates the causes and economic consequences of a voluntary turn away from IFRS to Swiss GAAP. As firms are permitted to switch from IFRS to Swiss GAAP in Switzerland, we can exploit this unique setting to analyze the reasons of a turn away, the changes in reporting, and its capital market effects. Prior literature on IFRS adoption (and other disclosure literature) generally finds a decrease in information asymmetry with increasing levels of disclosure. Accordingly, turning away from IFRS should increase the information asymmetry. However, our empirical results from a difference-in-differences design do not support this prediction. We interpret this finding as evidence that the disclosure level of Swiss GAAP is sufficient to meet the demand for disclosure of the switching firms’ investors. By providing evidence that—for certain firms—a switch away from IFRS does not necessarily induce negative economic consequences, the findings contribute to the current discussion on whether IFRS fits for small- and medium-sized firms.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Working Paper
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Business Administration
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Language:English
Date:21 December 2012
Deposited On:25 Jul 2019 11:42
Last Modified:25 Sep 2019 00:37
Series Name:Working Paper Series
OA Status:Green
Free access at:Official URL. An embargo period may apply.
Official URL:http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2192523
Other Identification Number:merlin-id:9171

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