Do Corporate Governance Characteristics Affect Non-Financial Risk Disclosure in Government-owned Companies? The Italian Experience

Allini Alessandra, Manes Rossi Francesca, Macchioni Riccardo/ Financial ReportingRiviste / Fascicolo: 1-2014

While a considerable amount of research has already been carried out into the corporate governance determinants of non-financial risk disclosure in companies in the private sector, such determinants in the annual reports of listed Governmentowned Companies (LGCs) have yet to be investigated fully. This study attempts to complete the picture. Italian LGCs have been selected for analysis and agency theory has been applied in the public sector under the accountability paradigm. The research investigates whether non-financial risk disclosure provided in the Management Commentary (MC) of Italian LGCs may be affected by ownership concentration, corporate governance mechanisms and company-specific features. The issue is of particular importance in a country where Government intervention has significantly affected its economic development since the nineteenth century. Our findings show that there is a relationship between the level of non-financial risk disclosure and Board diversity, leverage and sector. Our findings also reveal some useful insights concerning policy makers and standard setters.

Keywords: Government-owned companies, accountability, non-financial risk disclosure, corporate governance.

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