Effects Of Firm Characteristics On Financial Statement Fraud

Project and Seminar Material for Accountancy / Accounting

Effects Of Firm Characteristics On Financial Statement Fraud


Abstract


This is study is on firm characteristics on financial statement fraud. The total population for the study is 200 staff of total plc, Lagos. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made account officers, economists, administrative staff and junior staff were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background to the Study

The Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) (2001) defines fraud as “an array of irregularities and illegal acts characterized by intentional deception”. Turner (in Elliot & Willingham, 1980:97) and Robertson (2002:5) define fraud more broadly as “all means that human ingenuity can devise, and which are resorted to by an individual to get an advantage over another by false suggestions or suppression of the truth”. This type of fraud includes surprises, tricks, cunning, dissembling and any other unfair way by which another person is cheated. The definition of financial statement fraud is essentially the same as that of fraud, apart from a few additional aspects.

The International Standard of Auditing (lSA) 240 (IAASB, 2007:272) defines corporate fraud as “an intentional act by one or more individuals among management, those charged with governance, employees or third parties, involving the use of deception to obtain an unjust or illegal advantage”. Financial statement fraud is thus fraud committed by the management of an organization with the goal to artificially improve the financial performance and results of the company as stated in the financial statements. This is done most often by means of overstating assets and revenue or understating liabilities and expenses.

Financial statement fraud must be clearly distinguished from non-fraudulent earnings management and accounting errors. Non-fraudulent earnings management takes place when a legitimate generally accepted accounting practice (GAAP) method is applied, but only because it has a favorable impact on the financial statements (Rezaee, 2002). An example is a company’s management decision to use certain inventory valuation or depreciation methods. Such practices must, however, also be looked upon critically, as it can lead to greater accounting risk in the financial statements of a company.

Accounting risk refers to the increased risk of a company’s management perpetrating financial statement fraud at some stage in the future to improve the appearance of financial performance and position. The research therefore seek to investigate Effects of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud –A case study of Total plc.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

Financial statement fraud has larger implications than many managers realize. For many, it is only a means to improve results, but apart from harming the company in which it is being perpetrated, it can also affect economic markets.

Rezaee (2002:7) gives the following summary of the potential harmful effects of financial statement fraud: it undermines the quality and integrity of the financial reporting process; it jeopardizes the integrity and objectivity of the accounting profession; it diminishes the confidence of capital markets and market participants in the reliability of financial information; it makes the capital market less efficient; it adversely affects a nation’s growth and prosperity; it may result in litigation losses; it destroys the careers of individuals involved in the fraud; it causes bankruptcy or economic losses by the company engaged in the fraud; it encourages a higher level of regulatory intervention; and it causes destructions to the normal operations and performance of the alleged companies. At least for the above reasons, it is necessary to attempt the prevention of fraud incidences. A profile that is developed to analyse a company’s character and situation can help interested parties in a proactive way to protect their interests. Therefore, The problem confronting the research is to determine the effect of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud using Total Plc as the case study.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

  1. To determine the effects of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud.
  2. To determine the effects of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud in Total Plc.

1.4 Research Questions

  1. What is the Effect of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud?
  2. What is the Effect of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud in Total Plc?

1.5 Research Hypothesis

  • Ho: The Effects of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud in Total plc. is low.
  • Hi: The Effects of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud in Total plc. Is high.

1.6 Significance of the Study

The study elucidate on the Effects of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud, a case study of Total plc. Financial statement fraud has larger implications than many managers realize. For many, it is only a means to improve results, but apart from harming the company in which it is being perpetrated, it can also affect economic markets.


1.7 Scope of the Study

The study focuses on the appraisal of the Effects of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud –A case study of Total plc.


1.8 Limitations of the Study

The study was confronted by some constraints including logistics and geographical factor.


1.9 Definition of Terms

Fraud Defined

The Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) (2001) defines fraud as “an array of irregularities and illegal acts characterized by intentional deception”. Turner (in Elliot & Willingham, 1980:97) and Robertson (2002:5) define fraud more broadly as “all means that human ingenuity can devise, and which are resorted to by an individual to get an advantage over another by false suggestions or suppression of the truth”. This type of fraud includes surprises, tricks, cunning, dissembling and any other unfair way by which another person is cheated.

Financial Statement Fraud Defined

The International Standard of Auditing (lSA) 240 (IAASB, 2007:272) defines corporate fraud as “an intentional act by one or more individuals among management, those charged with governance, employees or third parties, involving the use of deception to obtain an unjust or illegal advantage”. Financial statement fraud is thus fraud committed by the management of an organization with the goal to artificially improve the financial performance and results of the company as stated in the financial statements.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Introduction

It is important to ascertain that the objective of this study was to ascertain effect of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud. In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations made which in the opinion of the researcher will be of benefits in addressing the challenges of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud


5.2 Summary

This study was on effect of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud. Three objectives were raised which included: To determine the effects of firm characteristics on financial statement fraud, to examine the effect of the firm size on the rate of financial statement likelihood, to discuss on the relationship between firm size and the likelihood of financial statement fraud. In line with these objectives, two research hypotheses were formulated and two null hypotheses were posited. The total population for the study is 200 staff of total plc, Lagos. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made account officers, economists, administrative staffand junior staff were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies


5.3 Conclusion

Conclusively, the study has provided both empirical as well as statistical evidence on the utility of total plc characteristics; firm size, leverage, independent directors, institutional shareholding, profitability, liquidity and growth in explaining and predicting financial reporting quality of the firms. Thus, firm characteristics are influencing financial reporting quality of total plc.


5.4 Recommendation

It is therefore recommended that all the firm characteristics used in this study except liquidity should be encouraged by the regulating agencies of government (Securities and Exchange Commission& Corporate Affairs Commission) and all other stakeholders in the Nigerian manufacturing sector because of the role that the firm characteristics play in constraining managers to act opportunistically in preparing financial statements.


Get Complete Project Material

5,000 5000

The Complete Material Will Be Sent to You in Just 2 Steps

Quick & Simple…


Step One Purchase

Make Payment (Through Transfer) of ₦5,000 to the Account Below

Zenith BankAcc No: 1225513212
Samphina Academy
Current Account

Or CLICK HERE To Pay With Debit Card


FOR STUDENTS OUTSIDE NIGERIA
CLICK HERE To Purchase Material ($15)

Step Two Purchase

Send the Following Details on WhatsApp ( 08143831497) After Payment

  1. Payment Details

  2. TOPIC: Effects Of Firm Characteristics On Financial Statement Fraud

The Complete Material Will Be Sent To You On WhatsApp After Receiving Your Details
T & C Apply


  Contact Our Help Desk


Need a Different Topic? Perform a Quick Search



List of Related Works

Click on Any Topic to Preview the Content

samphina.academy

Samphina Academy

Samphina Academy is an Online Educational Resource Center that is aimed at providing students with quality information and materials to aid them in succeeding in their academic pursuit.