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Malaysian Management Journal (MMJ) Vol. 8 No. 2 December 2004

Emotional Stability and Perception of Job Security in the Services Sector in Malaysia
Kamarul Zaman Ahmad
Faculty of Business and Accountancy
University Malaya
Nor Khasimah Aliman, Nurul Shanaz Ahmad Mahdzan, Maria Azlina Kamarudin, Chow Yee Peng & Tusha Nandita
MBA Students
University Malaya
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
Research pertaining to the perception of job security has focused primarily on attitudinal (e.g. job satisfaction), behavioral (e.g. employee turnover), and health outcomes, while research in the area of emotional stability has largely focused on attitudinal and social consequences. However, there appear to be no reported studies that have examined the relationship between emotional stability and the perception of job security in different industries within the Malaysian context. Data from 255 employees in the information technology, financial services and education industries were collected and analyzed. Results suggest that respondents in the education industry are more stable in the emotional dimension compared to those in the finance industry and that respondents in the education sector perceive job security to be higher compared to those in the finance and IT industries. In all three industries, emotional stability was significantly associated with perception of job security (r=0.403). There is strongest correlation between emotional stability and perception of job security scores in the financial services industry. This suggests that in an industry that is unstable, respondents with higher emotional stability tend to perceive the same environment as more stable than those who have lower emotional stability.

Preparers’ Perceptions Towards Quarterly Financial Reporting in Malaysia
Ku Nor Izah Ku Ismail
Faculty of Accountancy
Universiti Utara Malaysia
Roy Chandler
Cardiff University
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
This study examines the perceptions of preparers of financial reports towards the issues surrounding corporate quarterly financial reporting in Malaysia. Questionnaires were mailed to chief financial officers of the Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange (KLSE)1 listed companies, from whom 106 usable responses were gathered. The findings provide evidence that some preparers are not keen of the idea of quarterly reporting, despite the enforcement of the requirement. However, a majority of preparers are content with the current allowable reporting lag of two months, satisfied with the current content of the quarterly reports, and agree that management should at least discuss the quarterly results with the auditors. With respect to other matters, preparers expressed the view that the quarterly reports are reliable. However, there is also evidence that the first three quarterly reports are perceived to be less reliable than the fourth quarterly reports. The findings serve as an avenue for more research on quarterly financial reporting in Malaysia and other jurisdictions.

E-Reading in Organizations: Users’ Satisfaction and Preference
Norshuhada Shiratuddin & Shahizan Hassan
Faculty of Information Technology
Universiti Utara Malaysia
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
This paper defines electronic reading (e-reading) and then continues to discuss the diverse definitions of the main resource of e-reading, which are, electronic books (e-books). It then proceeds to describe the formats and standards of existing e-book initiatives, which are gaining wider interest since the introduction of portable electronic reading devices and software-based readers that provide users with a more realistic book reading experience. Advantages, disadvantages, and problems with paper-based reading are also explained. In addition, a study concerning an evaluation of e-reading satisfaction is described. Three different e-book formats (LIT, PDF, and HTML) were utilised to accomplish the primary aims of the study, which were to identify the most preferred format, associated software-based reader (Microsoft Reader, Adobe Acrobat Reader, Internet Explorer), and the potential of e-reading in the workplace. Based on a proposed preferred index, the results seem to suggest that Microsoft Reader is more preferable when compared to the other two. However, most participants preferred reading on paper rather than on screen. Although this was the case, some participants would e-read depending on resources and situations.

Identifying Parenting Practices: An Initial Step in Setting Up Parenting Program in School
Zahyah Hanafi
Faculty of Cognitive Sciences and Education
Universiti Utara Malaysia
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
The purpose of this study was to identify the levels of parenting practices among Malay and Chinese parents as perceived by their children. A total of 217 students responded to a questionnaire with items pertaining to their mothers’ and fathers’ demandingness and responsiveness practices. Findings revealed most of the Malay and Chinese parents in this study were perceived by their children to be low in demandingness and responsiveness. The only difference reported was between mothers’ and fathers’ demandingness. The response to each item in the demandingness and responsiveness measurement would be a guide to what should be included in the parenting course program. Implications for further research were also discussed.

Discriminating Complainers and Non-Complainers: A Study within the Malaysian Context
Aizzat Mohd. Nasurdin, Osman Mohamed, T. Ramayah & Shishi Kumar Piaralal
School of Management
Universiti Sains Malaysia
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
The purpose of this study is to examine whether consumers’ complaint behavior varies according to demographics, psychographics, and attitude toward businesses as well as product attributes. Discriminant analysis on a sample of 122 consumers residing in north Malaysia showed that complainers were males, married, better educated, and holding white collar jobs. Complainers were found to be more confident, more assertive, individualistic, and possessed a positive attitude toward complaining. Consumers who have a more positive attitude towards businesses and product attributes were more likely to complain. The discriminant model was able to predict behavior of complainers better than chance. Implications and suggestions for future research are discussed.

Qualified Audit Reports of Local Authorities in the Northern States of Malaysia
Mohammad Azhar Ibrahim, Engku Ismail Engku Ali, Syed Soffian Syed & Ismail Zainol Bidin
Faculty of Accountancy
Universiti Utara Malaysia
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
The reliability of information presented in the financial reports of local authorities is of utmost importance to enable the public to measure their performance in terms of efficiency and effectiveness in using public resources. The task to provide such an assurance lies with the Auditor General, who has been entrusted to enforce the auditing compliance regulations. A certificate in the form of “unqualified,” “qualified,” “adverse,” or “disclaimer” accompanied by a report on the financial affairs of the local authorities concerned will be issued after the Auditor General completes the audit of the local authorities’ financial statements. Our study on 14 local authorities comprising municipal and district councils in the Malaysian States of Perlis, Kedah and Penang found that the Qualified Certificate is the common type of audit certificate issued to the local authorities concerned during the period 1997-2001(inclusive of both years). Discrepancies in “Fixed Assets Register” ranked first among the audit incidents that led towards non-compliance to the audit procedures. This was followed by discrepancies in “Other Receivables” and “Cash Flow Statements” which ranked second and third positions respectively. Our finding also shows that size does not grant any advantage to the bigger local authority in reducing the number of audit incidents.
Keywords: Local authorities, financial reporting, accountability, audit incidents.

Added Taxes in the ASEAN-Pacific Region
Jonathan Baldry
School of Economics
University of New England
Abstract Ɩ Full Text
The Value Added Tax (or Goods and Services Tax) is the most popular form of general indirect tax in the world today. Of the ASEAN countries, only Myanmar, Brunei, Laos and Malaysia do not currently have a VAT, though the latter will introduce one in 2007. In the neighbouring Pacific region, both Australia and New Zealand have GSTs in place. This paper surveys the main features of the VATs/GSTs currently found in the ASEAN-Pacific region. In terms of structure, they range from the very simple and comprehensive taxes found in Singapore and New Zealand, to the highly complex VAT of Vietnam, which has two main rates and a multitude of exempt commodities. The administrative arrangements used to assess and collect the tax differ in detail but include a number of common features, such as exemptions for small businesses, simple invoice requirements for low-value transactions, and assessment on an invoice basis for large business, with a cash basis available to small business. The information and comparisons presented here are highly relevant for countries contemplating or planning the introduction of a VAT, such as Malaysia, and for countries in the region considering modifications to the tax. In general, the more comprehensive the tax, the simpler the administrative procedures required, the less the explanatory material that needs to be produced to educate the business community, and the greater the revenue-raising power of the tax.