"From 2005 the EU requires publicly listed companies to prepare financial statements based on IFRS instead of national accounting rules (EC No. 1606/2002). Regulators have suggested that harmonisation of financial reporting should bring benefits to companies and their capital providers which would in turn improve the efficiency of the European financial markets significantly. However, it is possible that these expectations are not borne out. Furthermore, in the aftermath of the recent financial crisis, IFRS regulation experienced significant changes, in particular with respect to fair value accounting. These arguments create a strong rationale for conducting the research outlined in this proposal. The objective of proposed research is to examine the financial statements effects of accounting regulation changes from the debt holders' perspective. While existing research mainly examines the implications of regulation changes for the equity markets, there is little evidence from the debt markets and the project attempts to fill this gap. The research will undertake a comprehensive analysis and develop understanding of the relevance of accounting information for corporate debt financing. It will be investigating how financial reporting as an information device can change the debt market infrastructure. Findings will be valuable in helping policy makers, regulators and practitioners to learn and adapt, and thus support the development of a more efficient EU economy. Since accounting and financial reporting are multi-disciplinary phenomena, accounting regulation is merely one part of a complex equilibrium. As a result, this research proposal will promote empirical financial reporting research by integrating multi-disciplinary theory and empirical methods from accounting and related disciplines including finance, economics and law. The project will give high priority to dissemination of research to and receipt of feedback from academic, policy and practice communities."
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