The value relevance of exploration and evaluation expenditures

Teng Zhou, Jacqueline Birt, Michaela Rankin

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    3 Citations (Scopus)


    Purpose: This paper aimstoinvestigate the value relevance ofthe various components of exploration and evaluation expenditures in the Australian extractives industry. Whether exploration and evaluation expenditures is more value relevant, following the adoption of AASB 6, and whether it differs for firms engaged only in exploration when compared to those also engaged in mining production is also examined. Design/methodology/approach: This paper uses a modified Ohlson model as a benchmark against which to compare an alternative valuation model featuring the disclosed components of exploration and evaluation expenditures. A sample comprising 430 firm-year observations between 2003 and 2009 is utilised. Findings: Written-off exploration and evaluation expenditures and the number of projects in which firms are involved is relevant to investors when assessing the value of extractive firms. Further, the implementation of AASB 6 has led to an improvement in the relevance of exploration and evaluation information in assessing firm value. Research limitations/implications: The sample is based on observations from the years 2003-2004 to the years 2006-2009. The authors do not incorporate 2005, as this is the first year the new standard was implemented, and there is the possibility of a settling in effect. The authors base our sample on the top 100 extractive firms in 2009. As such, these companies may not represent the accounting practices of smaller firms in the Australian extractive industry. Originality/value: The authors address a gap in the literature by examining the value relevance of the detailed line items of exploration and evaluation expenditure reported by extractives firms. The authors also explore the effect of regulatory changes by examining the value relevance of exploration and evaluation expenditures pre- and post-International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) 6/Australian Accounting Standards Board (AASB) 6 implementation. Finally, the authors contribute useful findings to the standard setters ongoing deliberations aimed at producing a comprehensive standard on extractive activities by providing useful feedback on the relevance of accounting for pre-production costs under a regime using the area of interest method.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)228 - 250
    Number of pages23
    JournalAccounting Research Journal
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

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