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The role of financial reporting in debt contracting and in stewardship


Accounting and Business Research



Authors / Editors

Shivakumar L

Publication Year



In this paper, I review the role that financial accounting plays in contracts aimed at mitigating agency problems between shareholders and managers and between shareholders and debtholders. The paper discusses the reasons why and how financial accounting numbers are used in debt and stewardship contracting. It further considers the effects of conservatism and fair-value accounting on the relevance of financial reports for contracting. The paper provides some key takeaways from academic literature for accounting practice and regulation.


Financial reporting; Contracting; Stewardship; Debt covenants; Fair-value accounting; Conservatism

Available on ECCH


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