State ownership and earnings management: empirical evidence from Vietnamese listed firms
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Studies examining the relationship between state ownership and earnings management are few to date. Additionally, the existing literature provides the inconsistent evidence with mixed implications on this relationship. Using financial data from Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange and Hanoi Stock Exchange, and the published annual reports of the firms listed in Vietnam, this study examines the effect of state ownership on earnings management of Vietnamese listed firms. We found that state-owned enterprises (SOEs) manage earnings less through accruals than privately owned enterprises (POEs), in contrast with the conventional belief that SOEs are more likely to manipulate earnings. Our results are consistent when we use the cut-off levels of 20 per cent, 30 per cent and 50 per cent state ownership as definitions of a state-owned enterprise.