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Women Accountants in Practicing Accounting Firms: Their Status, Investments and Returns

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Document pages: 24 pages

Abstract: In the past twenty years, the number of qualified women accountants in the U.S. has outstripped that of men according to American Institute of Certified Public Accountants; yet these women occupy few strategic positions in accounting firms. Retention has been a major issue. This study explores how the perception of their status, investments and returns therefrom influence their decisions to remain as career accountants or to leave. Accordingly, a conceptual framework and structured self-administered questionnaire were developed. Questionnaires were mailed to 140 female accountants in five states. The result suggests that women favorably perceive their status, investments and returns they get from being practicing accountants. However, their matriculation into the strategic positions of partners and managing partners is severely constrained by family and gender issues, and long standing traditions. Equality of pay, sabbatical and being given special considerations in audit and consultancy assignments are less important issues to them. (Contains 2 tables.)

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