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Wednesday, May 16, 2018

4th CEIBS Accounting and Finance Symposium Held

May 15, 2018. Shanghai – "Governance and Financial Reporting Issues in a Changing Economic Environment" was the theme of the Fourth CEIBS Accounting and Finance Symposium which brought together around 70 scholars from the US and Asia to discuss management accounting, governance and financial reporting issues pertinent to the evolving and changing economic environments. The venue was CEIBS Shanghai Campus.

Organised by CEIBS’ Department of Finance and Accounting, the symposium aims to build a platform through which finance and accounting scholars from around the globe can share their latest research findings and exchange ideas. It also provides an opportunity to showcase CEIBS to the academic community worldwide. Approximately 75 manuscripts were submitted to the symposium, from which six papers covering interesting and diverse accounting and finance issues were selected for discussion. Thirteen speakers and discussants from renowned business schools in the US and Asia participated throughout the day. Among them was keynote speaker Professor Tak-Jun Wong, Joseph A. DeBell Professor of Business Administration and Professor of Accounting from University of Southern California Marshall School of Business. He gave a fascinating speech on his life-long efforts related to “Corporate Governance Research on China Using Network and Textual Analysis”.

In his welcome address, CEIBS Vice President and Dean Professor Ding Yuan noted how the symposium is in line with the school’s expertise in providing knowledge grounded in “China Depth, Global Breadth” by having distinguished scholars from around the globe discuss challenging research issues that are of global importance and also relevant to China.

Here are a few highlights from the presentations:

How Transparent are Firms about their Corporate Venture Capital Investments?” examines firms’ corporate venture capital (CVC) investing activities from a voluntary disclosure and financial reporting perspective. CVC refers to minority equity investments made by established, publicly-traded firms in privately-held entrepreneurial ventures. The paper finds evidence that the lack of transparency is consistent with concerns about competition and associated with future acquisition frequency. It also examines the determinants and implications of CVC investing and found that firms with a CVC programme, relative to firms without one, tend to treat CVC investing as a complement to internal R&D spending and a substitute for capital expenditures.

Economic Uncertainty and Earnings Management” presented by Professor Luke C.D. Stein from Arizona State University made the point that when markets are less certain about a firm's future value, it reports more negative discretionary accruals. Stock-price responses to earnings surprises are moderated when firm-level uncertainty is high, consistent with performance being attributed more to luck, which can create incentives to shift earnings toward lower-uncertainty periods.

Direct Evidence on Earnings Used in Executive Compensation Performance Measurement,” provides direct evidence on the properties of actual accounting earnings that are used in determining compensation payouts (Compensation Earnings). Using a large sample of manually collected Compensation Earnings for U.S. firms, it shows that firms make economically significant adjustments to GAAP Earnings in arriving at Compensation Earnings.  

Carol Zhao
Charmaine Clarke