Date of Award

5-2007

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Major

Business Administration

Major Professor

Bruce K. Behn

Committee Members

Joseph V. Carcello, Philli R. Daves, Donald J. Bruce

Abstract

This paper examines whether complying with U.S. GAAP impacts non-U.S. firms’ cross-listing decisions and listing choices. The capital market consequence of U.S. GAAP compliance is also evaluated. Using two constructs (reconciliation and disclosure) established at the firm level to proxy for foreign firms’ U.S. GAAP compliance costs, I find that complying with U.S. financial reporting requirements is a significant cost factor when non-U.S. firms consider whether they should issue or list their shares in the U.S. This finding is consistent with previous survey or case studies which recognize that complying with U.S. GAAP is an important consideration when foreign firms contemplate U.S. listings. However, the significance of compliance costs diminishes as foreign firms decide whether or not they should cross-list on an organized stock exchange. The lack of finding is likely attributable to the fact that cross-listing, especially exchange-listing, gives foreign firms various benefits, such as cross-listing premiums, which potentially outweigh the compliance costs. The valuation analyses confirm the existence of cross-listing premiums. I further find that disclosure costs negatively affect the value of cross-listed firms; i.e., cross-listed firms that disclose less accounting information (incurring higher disclosure costs) are valued less by the market. This result is consistent with the general theme in the literature that disclosure matters. This study extends prior research by directly examining a major cross-listing cost, offering a more comprehensive measure of U.S. GAAP compliance, and measuring the costs at the firm level. It contributes to the understanding of the role accounting plays in non-U.S. firms’ cross-listing activities.

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