Is there a gender effect on the quality of audit services?


García Blandón, J.; Argilés-Bosch, J.; Ravenda, D.


Should we expect a gender effect on the quality of audit services? Both the behavioural economics literature and the glass ceiling for women in the audit profession suggest an affirmative answer to this question. We conduct the study with a sample of Spanish-listed companies for the period between 2008 and 2015 and use the quality of the client's financial statements as a proxy for the quality of audit services. The results provide sound and consistent support for a positive female auditor effect on the quality of audit services. Although our figures suggest that men and women tend to audit different types of clients, the results are not driven by these differences. Moreover, the gender effect occurs from the very first year of the appointment of a female partner to replace a male auditor. This study may contribute to challenging stereotypes and may be informative for the ongoing political debate regarding the under-representation of women in senior management levels.









Journal of Business Research, 2019, vol. 96, p. 238-249

Date of publication