This study provides evidence of the relationship between government intervention, financial reporting quality and due diligence. Specifically, the authors examine the consequences of the disclosure of inspection reports by the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) for individual audit firms inspected in the UK. Using a difference-in-differences design, it is found that clients are more likely to receive qualified audit opinions during the post-disclosure period. This significant impact on reporting decisions is more concentrated among clients of small audit firms. Moreover, despite general efficiency during the sample period, clients affected by an FRC intervention experience longer delays in receiving their audit reports. Overall, this study contributes to literature on corporate governance and audit regulation, and has implications for policy making. FRC inspections are of greater concern to small audit firms than large firms, as the latter have already built a strong reputation. In general, the transparent inspection process may be beneficial in enhancing auditor oversight.
- Auditor report lag
- FRC intervention
- Financial reporting quality
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)