A comparison of ethical perceptions of earnings-management practices - MENA region and USA
Businesses fail not only because of financial problems but also due to factors such as earnings-management and personal values. The problem with managing earnings is it becomes an ethical practice, regardless of who is or may be affected by the practice or the information that flows from it. Previous studies surveyed students and business managers to measure their perceptions about the morality of earnings management actions. This study compares a university in the MENA region with a university in the USA and shows that there is a significant difference between the perceptions of the universities. The accounting student of today becomes the business manager of tomorrow. Therefore, the problem is whether the accounting student's personal values can be changed towards a desired end. Students need more exposure and understanding of earnings management. Accounting educators should aim to assist students to understand how they may react once confronted with an ethical conflict when in practice. Furthermore, accounting courses should include regular reports of fraudulent practices in the media and accounting journals and greater emphasis should be placed in the accounting curricula on ethical earnings management practices.