Voluntary disclosure in a European emerging capital market : the case of the Athens stock exchange

Awarding institution
  • University of Strathclyde
Date of award
  • 2001
Thesis identifier
  • T10349
Qualification Level
Qualification Name
Department, School or Faculty
  • This thesis investigates empirically and explains theoretically the voluntary disclosure practices of public companies listed on an emerging European capital market at a time of rapid change. An investigation of the voluntary disclosure definition clarifies research approaches and definitions in prior empirical studies. The thesis also investigates association between selected corporate characteristics and voluntary disclosure. A voluntary disclosure index is developed to measure the extent of voluntary disclosure published in annual reports issued by 87 companies listed on the Athens Stock Exchange. Segmentation of the voluntary disclosure index into categories of corporate environment, social responsibility and financial information provides scope for further investigation and richer interpretation by testing corporate characteristics against each category of voluntary disclosure. Theoretical considerations and particular institutional and regulatory characteristics are applied to formulate testable hypotheses relating to size, gearing, profitability, liquidity, share marketability, industry, share volatility, share yield, type of report, and listing status. Using univariate and linear regression analysis, significant independent variables that explain variation in overall voluntary disclosure are found to be size, type of report, listing status, industry and share yield. It is also found that the observed association meets expectations in the separate categories of disclosure based on previous empirical work. Interview research is employed to explore further issues related to voluntary disclosure operation aiming at a better assessment of voluntary disclosure. Perceptions of influential market participants (directors, financial analysts, auditors, regulators and bankers) cast light on issues related to cost and benefits related issues, use and credibility of voluntary disclosures. The nature of voluntary disclosure and private voluntary disclosure are assessed through interview analysis. Overall research findings support systematic associations between corporate characteristics and voluntary disclosure. Interpretation is provided for significant and non-significant associations. Conclusions are drawn regarding the relative usefulness of theoretical frameworks in explaining voluntary disclosure in the case of Greece. Proposals for further research and policy implications are discussed.
Resource Type
Date Created
  • 2001
Former identifier
  • 620136