Title: Earnings quality and external governance on banks: empirical evidence in the European context

Authors: Costanza Di Fabio

Addresses: Department of Economics and Business Studies, University of Genoa, Via Vivaldi 5, 16126, Genoa, Italy

Abstract: This paper examines the relationship between external governance exerted by the national supervision and bank earnings quality, specifically earnings persistence and cash flow predictability. To test the predictions, multivariate regressions are carried out on a panel dataset of 4,443 bank-year observations from the European Union across the 2005-2014 timeframe. Results show that higher supervisory power, independence and greater stringency of capital regulation are associated to higher persistence of reported earnings. Additionally, banks under strict supervisory regimes, independent authorities and stricter capital regulation exhibit earnings that are better predictors of future cash flows. This paper has policy implications for the ongoing European debate concerning advantages and disadvantages of the new Single Supervisory Mechanisms, with specific reference to the influence of the national authorities' characteristics on bank transparency. The findings suggest indeed to adequately consider the effects of national supervisory styles on accounting quality.

Keywords: earnings quality; earnings persistence; banks; external governance; national supervision; European Union; capital regulation; bank transparency; supervisory independence; financial reporting.

DOI: 10.1504/IJAAPE.2019.106426

International Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation, 2019 Vol.15 No.4, pp.410 - 431

Received: 18 Sep 2018
Accepted: 15 Oct 2019

Published online: 06 Apr 2020 *

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