In the wake of the auditing fraud by Satyam Computers, market regulator SEBI has decided to review the earnings of all the companies that are a part of the stock market indices Sensex-30 and Nifty-50. To this end, SEBI will constitute a panel of auditors who will review the last quarterly results, as well as the annual financial results. Of the 30 Sensex stocks and 50 Nifty stocks, the following belong to the Digital & Media Domain:
Bharti Airtel: Q2 Results, Annual Report, MediaNama report
Idea Cellular: Q2 Results, Annual Report, MediaNama report
Reliance Communications: Q2 Results, Annual Report, MediaNama report
Tata Communications: Q2 Results, Annual Report
Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd: Q2 Results, Annual Results
The exercise is expected to be completed by the end of February.
What we’d like to see over the next few months is the enforcement of tighter disclosure norms for all listed companies, whether in the Sensex and Nifty, or not: financial results are supposed to enable easier comparison of the performance of listed entities, but over the past couple of years, we’ve noticed the following in case of some of the companies we cover:
— Lack of standardization in financial results terminology and structure
— Contradictory information disclosed in financial earnings call
— Insufficient disclosure of the performance of subsidiary companies on a Q on Q basis
— Regular modification in accounting norms, because of which it becomes impossible to compare performance quarter on quarter, or year on year.
— Insufficient inputs on reasons for significant changes in company performance
Whether things will change or not – we can’t say. However, we do believe that in the coming earnings season, all listed companies will be under the radar, and investors will (hopefully) ask tough questions.