Research: Five Questions
In our new research series, Five Questions, we'll be exploring and showcasing ICAS funded research.
Real and Quick-time data: A challenge to reporting and assurance? How real-time and quick-time data is shaping and transforming the practice and decision-making of financial analysts and professional investors.
Mark Aleksanyan and Yannis Tsalavoutas, University of Glasgow
Subhash Abhayawansa, Swinburne University of Technology;
Kenneth Lee, London School of Economics and Political Science
Technology and its impact and opportunities for the profession are a key topic of interest for ICAS Research. The project in this short video is funded by ICAS as a result of our 2019 Call for Research on Technology.
‘’The market for information has grown exponentially over the past 5 years with accelerating developments in information technologies and proliferation of alternative data sources. This has created new opportunities but also poses new challenges, to investors, analysts, corporates and other market actors. These inflection points are often the catalyst for significant shifts in practice. Anecdotal evidence suggests that real-time information and information processing technology play increasingly important role in professional investors’ and analysts’ decision-making. However, we do not yet have a clear understanding about the extent to which different types of investors and analysts actually rely upon real time data, or how they imbed this information and technology in their investment practices.
In relation to accounting information, and in the midst of this data revolution, we have to question if the model of quarterly or semi-annual reporting, which might appear to many to be archaic, is meeting the needs of users.’’
In Five Questions, we lift the lid on and cover some of the key preliminary findings from this academic research project, which focusses on the usage and perception of the usefulness of high frequency/real-time information and Technology by investors and analysts. The research aims to:
- Gain an evidence-based understanding of professional investors’ and financial analysts’ perceptions and usage of real-time and quick-time data in their practice of analysis of company performance, equity valuation and investment decision-making;
- Assess analysts’, investors’ and other stakeholders’ current and future perceived demand for real-time information in general, and quick-time corporate reporting information in particular;
- Assess users’ perspectives on the need for a new corporate reporting and assurance paradigm, and/or regulation of real- & quick-time data, in the future.
By addressing these objectives, this study aims to inform a broader debate about the relevance of the current corporate reporting paradigm (regulations, reporting standards and corporate reporting practices) in the era of real-time and big data, and steer future research in this field.