Peer Effects and Disclosure Timing: Evidence from Earnings Announcements

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Abstract

I study whether there are peer effects in disclosure timing decisions. Using plausibly exogenous variation in the timing of peers’ earnings announcements based on a threshold in Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) reporting deadline rules, I find that a focal firm responds to a peer’s early announcement by announcing its own earnings early. Consistent with attention competition, early-announcing peers attract market attention away from the focal firm, incentivizing it to also accelerate its own announcement. Moreover, peer effects impose significant negative spillover effects in the form of increased accounting-related costs on firms facing peer pressure to report early. My findings highlight a novel externality of peer effects in disclosure that has important implications for policymakers concerned with the timing of information releases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)427-458
Number of pages32
JournalAccounting Review
Volume98
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Economics and Econometrics

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