In 2003, authorities in Taiwan launched a system to annually rank listed firms according to disclosure levels to encourage increasing disclosure levels so as to reduce the cost of capital. This study explores the relation between disclosure levels (as proxied by the ranking results of the system) and market liquidity (as measured by effective bid-ask spreads) to empirically test whether the objective of the system can be achieved. In examining the relation between disclosure and the cost of capital, Francis et al.  find that the relation between the constructs is caused because disclosure is merely seen as a proxy for earnings quality. Following Francis et al. , this study examines whether earnings quality plays a role in the relation between disclosure and liquidity. The results of the study reveal that market liquidity is better for firms with higher levels of disclosure. In addition, this study finds that market liquidity is higher (lower) for firms with higher (lower) earnings quality. Finally, in contrast to Francis et al. , this study finds no significant difference in the relation between disclosure levels and liquidity after controlling for earnings quality, which indicates that, aside from earnings quality, information disclosure is also affected by other factors.
The Austin Journal of Accounting, Audit and Finance Management, Vol.1, No.1, pp.1-11