|Working Papers 2014
14/5 Earnings Quality and Performance in the Banking Industry: A profit Frontier Approach.
The analysis of efficiency and productivity in banking has received a great deal of attention for almost three decades now. However, most of the literature to date has not explicitly accounted for risk when measuring efficiency. We propose an analysis of profit efficiency taking into account how the inclusion of a variety of bank risk measures might bias efficiency scores. Our measures of risk are partly inspired by the literature on earnings management and earnings quality, keeping in mind that loan loss provisions, as a generally accepted proxy for risk, can be adjusted to manage earnings and regulatory capital. We also consider some variants of traditional models of profit efficiency where different regimes are stipulated so that financial institutions can be evaluated in different
dimensions—i.e., prices, quantities, or prices and quantities simultaneously. We perform this analysis on the Spanish banking industry, whose institutions have been deeply affected by the current international financial crisis, and where re-regulation is taking place. Our results can be explored in multiple dimensions but, in general, they indicate that the impact of earnings management on profit efficiency is of less magnitude than what might a priori be expected, and that on the whole, savings banks have performed less well than commercial banks. However, savings banks are adapting to the new regulatory scenario and rapidly catching up with commercial banks, especially in some dimensions of performance.
14/4 Incumbent Audit Firm-Provided Tax Services and the Clients with Low Financial Reporting Quality.
This study investigates whether incumbent audit firm-provided tax services enhance or impair the likelihood of acknowledging client companies’ low financial reporting quality. In particular, we examine the association between tax-related fees and the likelihood of timely restatements, and internal control weakness disclosures among a sample of US companies that all have misstatements in financial information. The empirical findings indicate that companies paying higher tax-related fees are less likely to disclose SOX 404 internal control weakness disclosures, implying that underlying control problems are unacknowledged when incumbent audit firmprovided tax-related fees are higher. However, the findings suggest that just providing both audit and tax-related services does not have an impact on audit quality per se, but rather it is the magnitude of the tax-related fees in particular that counts. We also find some evidence suggesting that companies paying higher tax-related fees have higher likelihood of restatement lags, whereas companies paying smaller tax-related fees to their audit firm restate financial statements in a timelier manner. Overall, the findings suggest that audit scrutiny of client companies with low quality financial reporting is weaker when the magnitude of tax-related fees is higher.
14/3 Measuring School Demand in the Presence of Spatial Dependence. A Conditional Approach.
Laura López-Torres, Diego Prior
Improving educational quality is an important public policy goal. However, its success requires identifying factors associated with student achievement. At the core of these proposals lies the principle that increased public school quality can make school system more efficient, resulting in correspondingly stronger performance by students. Nevertheless, the public educational system is not devoid of competition which arises, among other factors, through the efficiency of management and the geographical location of schools. Moreover, families in Spain appear to choose a school on the grounds of location. In this environment, the objective of this paper is to analyze whether geographical space has an impact on the relationship between the level of technical quality of public schools (measured by the efficiency score) and the school demand index. To do this, an empirical application is performed on a sample of 1,695 public schools in the region of Catalonia (Spain). This application shows the effects of spatial autocorrelation on the estimation of the parameters and how these problems are addressed through spatial econometrics models. The results confirm that space has a moderating effect on the relationship between efficiency and school demand, although only in urban municipalities.
14/2 Does Land Titling Matter? The Role of Land Property Rights in the War in Illicit Crops in Colombia.
Juan Carlos Muñoz Mora, Santiago Tobón-Zapata, Jesse Willem d'Anjou
This paper analyzes the role of formalization of land property rights
in the war against illicit crops in Colombia. We argue that as a consequence of
the increase of state presence and visibility during the period of 2000 and 2009,
municipalities with a higher level of formalization of their land property rights saw
a greater reduction in the area allocated to illicit crops. We hypothesize that this
is due to the increased cost of growing illicit crops on formal land compared to
informal, and due to the possibility of obtaining more benefits in the newly installed
institutional environment when land is formalized. We exploit the variation in the level of formalization of land property rights in a set of municipalities that had their first cadastral census collected in the period of 1994-2000; this selection procedure guarantees reliable data and an unbiased source of variation. Using fixed effects estimators, we found a signicant negative relationship between the level of formalization of land property rights and the number of hectares allocated to coca crops per municipality. These results remain robust through a number of sensitivity analyses. Our findings contribute to the growing body of evidence on the positive effects of formal land property rights, and effective policies in the war on drugs in Colombia.
14/1 The Influence of the Quality of Government Institutions on Entrepreneurial Motivation: Exploring the Variance Across Countries.
José Ernesto Amorós, Pekka Stenholm
Despitethe increasing understanding of the relationships between institutions and entrepreneurship, the influence of the quality of government institutions on entrepreneurship is less addressed. This paper focuses on this critical determinant of entrepreneurship in developing and developed countries. Drawing from institutional theory we hypothesize and empirically assess the role of the quality of institutions in entrepreneurial activity. We examine how the quality of government institutions influences the rate of necessity-based entrepreneurial activity across countries and over time by using a cross-sectional time-series approach on data from the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) database covering the years 2001–2011. Our results suggest that higher economic development associated with better quality of institutions reduces the prevalence of necessity-basedentrepreneurship. Our findings imply that developing countries must rationally organize their functions, and seek to remove unnecessary barriers, decrease political instability, and controls that hamper entrepreneurial activity.