HCBE Theses and Dissertations
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FINANCIAL STATEMENT PREPARERS' REVENUE DECISIONS: ACCURACY IN APPLYING RULES-BASED STANDARDS AND THE IASB-FASB REVENUE RECOGNITION MODEL
Date of Award
Dissertation - NSU Access Only
Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)
H. Wayne Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship
U.S. GAAP and the software industry in particular, are on the verge of a major alteration in revenue-recognition accounting standards. The IASB-FASB joint revenue-recognition project is due to be finalized over the next year with the result being a shift from a rules-based set of accounting standards to a principles-based standard. The purpose of this research is to examine financial statement preparers' software revenue-recognition decisions under a principles-based accounting standard compared to a rules-based accounting standard both with and without a personal incentive to maximize revenue. The 2 X 2 between-subjects experiment examines the revenue-recognition judgments and decisions of financial statement preparers involved in applying rules-based standards (U.S. GAAP) and a principles-based standard (IASB-FASB Exposure Draft: Revenue from Contracts with Customers) with and without a personal incentive to maximize revenue. The study included 127 experienced financial statement preparers with an average of 20 years of experience and 82% at a manager/director level or above.
The results indicate financial statement preparers applying rules-based standards in a revenue-recognition scenario provide less accurate revenue decisions than when applying a principles-based standard. Moreover, the results did not show that a personal incentive influenced the financial statement preparers in their revenue-recognition decisions. Surprisingly, in the rules-based and principles-based scenarios where a personal incentive was not present, the arithmetic mean recommended revenue amounts were higher. In providing the amount of judgment required to determine the revenue to be recognized, there was not a statistically significant difference in the amount of judgment required between subjects applying rules-based standards and subjects applying principles-based standards. The arithmetic means for rules-based subjects and principles-based indicated some judgment however not significant judgment was required. This is interesting to note as so few subjects correctly answered the revenue amount and neglected to fully apply the guidance.
Mary Miller McCarthy. 2012. FINANCIAL STATEMENT PREPARERS' REVENUE DECISIONS: ACCURACY IN APPLYING RULES-BASED STANDARDS AND THE IASB-FASB REVENUE RECOGNITION MODEL. Doctoral dissertation. Nova Southeastern University. Retrieved from NSUWorks, H. Wayne Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship. (73)