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An Exploratory Study Regarding the Effects of Auditor Switch, Auditee’s Industry, and Auditee’s Location on Audit Fees in Australia

Authors: Ashkan Mirzay Fashami

Abstract:

This study examines the effects of auditor switch, auditee’s industry, and auditee’s location on audit fees in Australia. It uses fee data of Australian Securities Exchange 500 companies, considering all industry classifications throughout the country from 2006 until 2016. Main findings show that auditor switch does not affect audit fees. However, auditee’s industry affects audit fees. This effect occurs in information technology, financials, energy, and materials sectors among the top 500 companies. Financials, energy, and materials sectors face a fee rise, whereas information technology has a fee cut. The extent of fee changes is different among various industries, wherein the financial sector has the highest increase. Further, auditee’s location affects audit fees. Top 500 companies in Hobart, Perth, and Brisbane face a fee reduction, wherein the highest cut is in Hobart. Further analysis suggests that the Australian audit market is being increasingly concentrated in the hands of the Big Four audit firms.

Keywords: Audit fee, auditor switch, Australia, industry, location.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3299629

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