An Investigation of the Effect of Accountant Involvement with Forecasts on the Decisions and Perceptions of Commercial Lenders Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • Guidance for the traditional attest function recently has been expanded to provide directions to independent accountants performing engagements on forecasted financial statements (“Financial Forecasts and Projections,” AICPA [1992, AT 200]). Although the use of forecasted financial information in lending decisions has been extensively examined in previous research, the extent to which engagements identified by “Financial Forecasts and Projections” actually affect users' decisions and perceptions has not been determined. This study examines whether decisions and perceptions of commercial lenders are influenced by the level of accountant involvement (no involvement, a compilation engagement, or an examination engagement) with a hypothetical loan candidate's forecasted financial statements. The results of this study indicate that bankers consider the extent of accountant involvement with forecasted financial statements in their lending decisions. In addition, a significant interaction between the level of accountant involvement with historical financial statements and forecasted financial statements indicates that this effect is more pronounced when the accountant also audits the loan candidate's historical financial statements. However, bankers' perceptions of the responsibilities assumed and assurances provided by the accountant in these engagements differ from statements in accountants' reports. These inconsistencies suggest the need for the AICPA to modify current accountants' reports to communicate more clearly the nature of these engagements and to provide further education to users.

author list (cited authors)

  • Strawser, J. R.

citation count

  • 11

publication date

  • July 1994
  • January 1, 1994 11:11 AM