Author

Kun Lui

Date of Award

Spring 2020

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

Department

Moore School of Business

First Advisor

Ling Harris

Abstract

This study examines how accounting reserves influence firms’ internal decisions. In particular, this study investigates whether and how reserves currently reported in a firm’s balance sheet affect managerial risk-taking in the making of capital investment decisions. The experimental results show that firm managers are more likely to take risks in the making of capital investment decisions when the amount of reserves is large compared with when it is small. Additionally, the amount of reserves influences managerial risk-taking through sequentially influencing managers’ perceived risks of missing relevant earnings targets and managers’ perceived risks of investing in risky capital investment options. These findings contribute to the accounting literature and they have implications for firm managers by providing evidence regarding the real economic consequences of exercising accounting discretion.

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