One Hundred Years of Disappointed Expectations: A Quantitative Content Analysis of the Auditor's Responsibility to Discover Fraud Traced Through Montgomery's Auditing, 1912-1998

Journal of Forensic & Investigative Accounting, 2011

43 Pages Posted: 22 Sep 2010 Last revised: 3 Aug 2012

See all articles by Stephanie D. Moussalli

Stephanie D. Moussalli

University of Mississippi-Patterson School of Accountancy

O. Ronald Gray

Independent

Gokhan Karahan

University of Alaska Anchorage - College of Business & Public Policy

Date Written: September 01, 2011

Abstract

We use the authoritative Montgomery’s Auditing reference series from 1912 to 1998 as a proxy for the U.S. auditing profession’s stance towards fraud detection as an audit goal and its attention to the implementation of this goal. A quantitative content analysis of the editions finds that the amount of text expressing a position on the auditor’s fraud detection responsibility, whether affirmative, negative, or ambivalent, was very high in the early 20th century, low from 1916-1975, and high in the last decades. In contrast, text explaining how to detect fraud lagged the three positions variables (affirmation, denial, ambivalence). How-to text was voluminous until mid-century, plummeted after 1949, and stayed low thereafter despite the appearance of new standards acknowledging fraud detection as a goal and despite the series’ stated support of the new standards.

Keywords: fraud, fraud detection, auditing, auditing history, Montgomery, U.S. auditing history, audit techniques

JEL Classification: N82, N22, M41

Suggested Citation

Moussalli, Stephanie D. and Gray, O. Ronald and Karahan, Gokhan, One Hundred Years of Disappointed Expectations: A Quantitative Content Analysis of the Auditor's Responsibility to Discover Fraud Traced Through Montgomery's Auditing, 1912-1998 (September 01, 2011). Journal of Forensic & Investigative Accounting, 2011, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1680902 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1680902

Stephanie D. Moussalli (Contact Author)

University of Mississippi-Patterson School of Accountancy ( email )

PO Box 1848
School of Accountancy, Univ. Mississippi
University, MS 38677
United States

O. Ronald Gray

Independent ( email )

Gokhan Karahan

University of Alaska Anchorage - College of Business & Public Policy ( email )

United States

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