Are public companies gaming their quarterly earnings to increase bonuses and other rewards for their management teams? That’s the topic of the lead article appearing in the latest issue of Management Accounting Quarterly (MAQ), IMA’s online, peer-reviewed journal.

The article, Overhead Cost Allocation and Earnings Manipulation between Quarters, by Susan Wahab, Ph.D., CPA; Karen Teitel Ph.D.; and Carl Smith, Ph.D., CMA, CFM, CPA, discusses that, as with annual earnings reports, the potential exists for management to manipulate quarterly earnings reports to improve certain metrics for their own gain. The article presents the findings of a study that examines the conditions in which applied overhead rates could be used to manipulate quarterly earnings reports. The key takeaway? Such manipulation could be occurring on a troublingly frequent basis among public companies.

Other articles in the latest issue of MAQ include:

MAQ is a refereed online journal that contains in-depth articles by and for academics and practitioners of accounting and financial management. Topics typically covered in the journal include: cost/management accounting techniques, ABC/ABM, statistical process controls, target costing, theory of constraints, methods of calculating stock options, techniques to improve accounting and finance education, new theories in finance and accounting, technology, and more.

Practitioners and IMA® (Institute of Management Accountants) academic members looking to publish their original work or research in MAQ can visit the IMA website to find more information about editorial guidelines and submissions.