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Beyond gender diversity: How specific attributes of female directors affect earnings management

Ammar Ali Gull, Mehdi Nekhili (), Haithem Nagati and Tawhid Chtioui

The British Accounting Review, 2018, vol. 50, issue 3, 255-274

Abstract: We apply the system GMM regression estimation approach to a matched sample of French firms listed on Euronext Paris during the period 2001–2010 in order to investigate the relationship between female directors and earnings management by considering their specific (statutory and demographic) attributes. We first find that the presence of female directors deters managers from managing earnings. However, this finding does not hold when the statutory and demographic attributes of female directors are taken into account, thus showing that the detection and the correction of earnings management require particular competencies and skills. Interestingly, we find that business expertise and audit committee membership are key attributes of female directors that promote the effective monitoring of earnings management. An important implication of our findings is that the decision to appoint women on corporate boards should be based more on their statutory and demographic attributes than on blind implementation of gender quotas. Finally, our supplementary analysis reveals that female CEOs and CFOs are strongly inclined to reduce earnings management.

Keywords: Female directors; Statutory attributes; Demographic attributes; Earnings management (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J11 J16 M10 M40 M41 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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Handle: RePEc:eee:bracre:v:50:y:2018:i:3:p:255-274