Research Interests: disclosure versus recognition, mandatory disclosure, voluntary disclosure
Jeremy Michels’ research focuses on how disclosures are used by market participants. Specifically, his work examines how characteristics of a disclosure, such as verifiability, affect how market participants use the disclosure. Jeremy Michels performed his doctoral studies at the University of Colorado Boulder. He holds his CPA license (inactive) in Minnesota and worked as a senior consultant at Protiviti prior to returning to academia to pursue his Ph.D.
Christopher D. Ittner and Jeremy Michels (2017), Risk-Based Forecasting and Planning and Management Earnings Forecasts, Review of Accounting Studies, 11 (3), pp. 1005-1047.
Abstract: This study examines the association between a firm’s internal information environment and the accuracy of its externally-disclosed management earnings forecasts. Internally, firms use forecasts to plan for uncertain futures. The risk management literature argues that integrating risk-related information into forecasts and plans can improve a firm’s ability to forecast future financial outcomes. We investigate whether this internal information manifests itself in the accuracy of external earnings guidance. Using detailed survey data and publicly-disclosed management earnings forecasts from a sample of publicly-traded U.S. companies, we find that more sophisticated risk-based forecasting and planning processes are associated with smaller earnings forecast errors and narrower forecast widths. These associations hold across a variety of different planning horizons (ranging from annual budgeting to long-term strategic planning), providing empirical support for the theoretical link between internal information quality and the quality of external disclosures.
Jeremy Michels (2017), Disclosure versus Recognition: Inferences from Subsequent Events, Journal of Accounting Research, 55 (1), pp. 3-34.
Abstract: Standard setters explicitly state that disclosure should not substitute for recognition in financial reports. Consistent with this directive, prior research shows that investors find recognized values more pertinent than disclosed values. However, it remains unclear whether reporting items are recognized because they are more relevant for investing decisions, or whether requiring recognition itself prompts differing behavior on the part of firms and investors. Using the setting of subsequent events, I identify the differential effect of requiring disclosure versus recognition in a setting where the accounting treatment of an item is exogenously determined. For comparable events, I find a stronger initial market response for firms required to recognize relative to firms that must disclose, although the large magnitude of the identified effect calls into question whether this difference can be attributed to accounting treatments alone. In examining various reasons for the stronger market response to recognized values, I fail to find support for the hypothesis that this difference is due to differential reliability of disclosed and recognized values. I do find some evidence that investors underreact to disclosed events, consistent with investors incurring higher processing costs when using disclosed information.
Jeremy Michels (2012), Do Unverifiable Disclosures Matter? Evidence from Peer-to-Peer Lending, The Accounting Review, 87 (4), pp. 1385-1413.
Abstract: The role of disclosure in attenuating market inefficiencies has been the subject of extensive research. While costless, voluntary, and unverifiable disclosures are unlikely to be credible sources of information, prior research demonstrates that individuals' decisions can be influenced by uninformative content. I use a unique dataset from a peer-to-peer lending website, Prosper.com, to demonstrate an economically large effect of voluntary, unverifiable disclosures in reducing the cost of debt. My results show an additional unverifiable disclosure is associated with a 1.27 percentage point reduction in interest rate and an 8 percent increase in bidding activity.
This course is an introduction to the basic concepts and standards underlying financial accounting systems. Several important concepts will be studied in detail, including: revenue recognition, inventory, long-lived assets, present value, and long term liabilities. The course emphasizes the construction of the basic financial accounting statements - the income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement - as well as their interpretation.
This course provides an introduction to both financial and managerial accounting, and emphasizes the analysis and evaluation of accounting information as part of the managerial processes of planning, decision-making, and control. A large aspect of the course covers the fundamentals of financial accounting. The objective is to provide a basic overview of financial accounting, including basic accounting concepts and principles, as well as the structure of the income statement, balance sheet, and statement of cash flows. The course also introduces elements of managerial accounting and emphasizes the development and use of accounting information for internal decisions. Topics include cost behavior and analysis, product and service costing, and relevant costs for internal decision-making. This course is recommended for students who will be using accounting information for managing manufacturing and service operations, controlling costs, and making strategic decisions, as well as those going into general consulting or thinking of starting their own businesses.