This study identifies factors which are influential in determining management's choice of the timing of an accounting disclosure (the release of cash flow information; that is, the adoption of SFAS No. 95.) This disclosure does not affect reported net earnings. Several of the factors which have been shown to affect management's choice of accounting procedures that do affect reported net income are shown here to affect disclosure choice. The unique contribution of this study is the extension of the positive accounting theory of choice into the area of non-income-affecting disclosure choices, specifically cash flow disclosure.
Size, the degree of management's control and the percentage change in a performance measure (cash flow from operations) are shown by univariate methods to significantly influence management's choice of adoption date of SFAS No. 95, entitled "statement of Cash Flows." A relatively unexplored variable, the value of management's stock options, was found to influence this choice. A multivariate procedure, LOGIT, was significant at the level of the overall model. The importance of one variable, the basis of the funds statement in the year prior to the adoption of SFAS No. 95, dominated the other variables. with this variable removed, the overall model remained significant and the individual variables of the change in cash flows form operations and the degree of management control were significant.
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