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Title: Auditors' issue contingency of reduced audit quality acts: perceptions of managers and partners

Authors: Jan Svanberg; Peter Öhman

Addresses: Department of Business, Economics and Law, Centre for Research on Economic Relations, Mid Sweden University, SE-851 70 Sundsvall, Sweden ' Department of Business, Economics and Law, Centre for Research on Economic Relations, Mid Sweden University, SE-851 70 Sundsvall, Sweden

Abstract: This study examines how managers and partners in audit firms perceive the moral intensity of various reduced audit quality (RAQ) acts, and whether perceived moral intensity affects the likelihood of these acts being committed. We surveyed managers and partners employed by audit firms operating in Sweden, measuring their perceptions of the moral intensity of seven RAQ acts using Jones' (1991) moral intensity scale and their self-reported frequencies of these acts. The study finds that managers and partners regard RAQ acts as morally serious, and that the moral intensity of an RAQ act is negatively related to the frequency of the act's occurrence for three of the seven acts. This suggests that managers' and partners' moral intensity perceptions do not unequivocally discourage auditors from committing these offences.

Keywords: auditing; reduced audit quality acts; RAQ; moral intensity; moral issues; ethical judgments.

DOI: 10.1504/IJAAPE.2019.096740

International Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Performance Evaluation, 2019 Vol.15 No.1, pp.57 - 88

Received: 06 Apr 2017
Accepted: 16 Feb 2018

Published online: 19 Nov 2018 *

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