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Does voluntary audit affect the cost of debt and firm growth?: Evidence from Sweden
Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Business Administration and Management.
Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Economics.
Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Business Administration and Management. Högskolan i Gävle.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5043-6289
Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Economics.
2017 (English)Conference paper, (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Many European countries have abolished mandatory audits for small firms, but we still lack knowledge on whether this affects small firm growth. A Swedish reform in 2010 made audits voluntary for small firms fulfilling certain requirements, while firms that did not meet these requirements still had mandatory audits. We argue that this regulatory change created an almost perfect natural experiment, which can be exploited to evaluate the effects of the reform on employment growth using a difference-in-difference estimator. Our results show that firms who fulfil the requirements for voluntary auditing, as compared to a control group of firms that does not, increased their employment growth rates by on average 0.39%, corresponding to 5 500 jobs being created in the three years following the reform. It thus seems that voluntary audits are reducing the regulatory burden for small firms, making resources available that can be used to increase the number of employees. The current threshold levels for mandatory audits are still significantly lower in Sweden than in most other European countries, which implies that the policymakers in Sweden could create more jobs in small and medium-sized firms if they increased the size threshold levels for mandatory audits.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
Keyword [en]
Cost of capital, cost of debt, voluntary audit, growth
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Complex Systems – Microdata Analysis
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-24253OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-24253DiVA: diva2:1073591
Conference
European Accounting Association Annual Congress May 9-12, 2017, Valencia, Spain
Available from: 2017-02-11 Created: 2017-02-11 Last updated: 2017-05-08Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf