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Auditor fee dependence, auditor tenure, and auditor independence: the case of Finland
by Damai Nasution; Ralf Östermark
International Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation (IJAAPE), Vol. 9, No. 3, 2013


Abstract: A Green Paper on Audit Policy published by the European Commission is questioning, among other issues, whether the maximum fee collected from one client should be regulated and whether continuous assignment should be limited. In this paper, we examine the association between fee dependence and auditor tenure on auditor independence in Finland. We utilise audit, non-audit, and total fees as proxies of auditor fee dependence and discretionary accruals as a proxy of auditor independence. We find that: 1) fee dependence is not associated with discretionary accruals; 2) short auditor tenure (i.e., one year, equal or less than two years, and equal to or less than three years) is positively associated with discretionary accruals, however, only the former is statistically significant; 3) long auditor tenure is negatively associated with discretionary accruals, though this result is not statistically significant. Taken together, these results do not support policies to regulate auditor fee and limit auditor tenure in Finland.

Online publication date: Tue, 13-Aug-2013


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