No. 84: Does every accounting issue need a solution?

Abstract

We discuss the concept and costs of resolving accounting issues. We first characterize the (degree of) resolution of an accounting issue as a continuous concept, arguing that an accounting issue is unresolved where an established solution is either uncertain or produces financial information with undesired consequences. We then describe standard setters and market participants as possible institutions that can contribute to such resolution. A series of standard-setting cases illustrates different settings as well as sources and degrees of resolution. We then review extant studies that speak to two important cost factors shaping the supply of accounting solutions: costs of learning about accounting solutions and opportunity costs arising from reduced incentives for innovations in accounting. We conclude with suggestions for future research and implications for standard setting.

Beteiligte Institutionen

Die Hauptstandorte vom TRR 266 sind die Universität Paderborn (Sprecherhochschule), die HU Berlin und die Universität Mannheim. Alle drei Standorte sind seit vielen Jahren Zentren für Rechnungswesen- und Steuerforschung. Hinzu kommen Wissenschaftler der LMU München, der Frankfurt School of Finance and Management, der WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management, der ESMT Berlin, der Goethe-Universität Frankfurt und der Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg, die die gleiche Forschungsagenda verfolgen.