This study examines financial analysts forecasts of a firms earnings for foreign companies. We examine two issues. First, we examine the magnitude of analysts forecast errors across fifteen sample countries including the U.S. The differences of forecast errors are compared both cross-sectionally and across time during the year. Then, we regress the forecast errors on certain firm-specific and accounting environment factors. The regression identifies the factors that explain the differences in the forecast errors across firms and countries.
We find that analysts forecast errors significantly differ across companies. The differences are largely attributed to firm specific factors such as firm size, dispersion of forecast errors, and industry factors. However, after controlling for these factors, the differences in accounting practices in measurement and disclosure are found to significantly explain the variations in forecast errors across countries.