Journal of Risk

Public visibility and risk-related disclosures in Portuguese credit institutions

Jonas Oliveira, Lúcia Lima Rodrigues and Russell Craig


This study analyzes individual annual reports for 2006 to assess factors affecting the risk-related disclosures of 185 Portuguese credit institutions. Based on legitimacy theory and on resources-based perspectives, a new proxy for public visibility is proposed in order to explain the importance of monitoring by stakeholders in explaining risk-related disclosure. A statistically significant relationship is found between risk-related disclosures of Portuguese credit institutions and their public visibility. Managers of Portuguese credit institutions with high public visibility attribute greater importance to risk-related disclosure than do banks with lower public visibility. They appear to do so to gain or maintain legitimacy and improve their reputation.