Journal of Economics and Development, Vol. 21 No. 2, pp. 234-246 | DOI 10.1108/JED-10-2019-0040
A longitudinal study of audit quality differences among independent auditors
The purpose of this paper is to investigate the differences of audit quality of financial statements among auditors, including Big 4 and non-Big 4 auditors.
By employing cross-sectional analysis of compliance (a proxy of audit quality) of goodwill impairment testing of listed firms in the context of Hong Kong, the variation of audit quality of financial statements of auditees has been shown.
Audit quality of Big 4 auditors is viewed to be higher than that of non-Big 4 audit firms and the homogeneity of audit quality among Big 4 auditors is not long accepted, but variation.
Even though unqualified opinions have been given on the auditors’ reports, the quality of financial statements audit is a skeptical issue because of the high level of non-compliance of goodwill impairment testing under International Financial Reporting Standards.
This study does emphasize the higher audit quality of financial statements of Big 4 auditors than that of non-Big 4 auditors and stresses the variation of audit quality among Big 4 auditors.
Keywords:Hong Kong, Goodwill, Audit quality, HKAS 36