Hyun Min Oh Heung Joo Jeon

Abstract

This study empirically analyzes the effect of board characteristics on real earnings management, which is measured by using three proxies including abnormal cash flows from operations, abnormal discretionary expenses, and abnormal production costs. Specifically, we will investigate how board independence (or board size) affects real earnings management. Additionally, we will investigate the relation between the board characteristics and real earnings management according to before K-IFRS mandatory adoption or after K-IFRS mandatory adoption.
The empirical results of this study are as follows. First, the relation between board independence (board size) and the absolute value of abnormal cash flows from operations is statistically significant and positive (+). Second, the relation between board independence (board size) and the absolute value of abnormal production costs is statistically significant and positive (+). Third, the relation between board independence (board size) and the absolute value of abnormal discretionary expenses is statistically significant and positive (+). These findings present that the board independence (or board size) does not constrain real earnings management. Thus, these mean that board independence (or board size) does not work as a mechanism to reduce real earnings management.
This study contributes to accounting research as it directly tests the relation between the board characteristics and real earnings management in Korea, providing empirical support that a board independence (board size) does not constrain real earnings management as effectively as it constrains accrual earnings management.