This paper follows Balvers, McDonald and Miller (1988), and Beatty (1989), who find lower underpricing in Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) when prestigious auditors are used to attest to the IPO's financial statements. Australian IPOs are not obliged to nominate audit firms in the prospectus, but often identify that they will have audit committees so as to assist in more appropriate corporate governance. This paper analyzes if IPOs identifying the existence of audit committees in the prospectus have a lower underpricing return. While our findings are consistent with previous studies concluding that both the size of the new issue and the use of an underwriter are important ingredients in the level of underpricing return, the inclusion of an audit committee in the prospectuses has actually increased underpricing returns. The capital market may view the audit committee identification with some skepticism.
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