The Impact of Managers’ Deliberate Decisions on Costs’ Stickiness



Recent research on cost behavior has revealed that the magnitude of decrease in costs associated with decrease in sales is lower than the magnitude of the increase in costs associated with an equivalent increase in sales. This asymmetric cost behavior is termed as “cost stickiness.” One of the hypotheses on costs stickiness explains it as a result of the deliberate decisions of managers. In this paper, sales forecasts issued by managers are used as a proxy for managers’ prospect of future sales and the deliberate decision hypothesis was examined empirically among 186 firms during 1380 to 1388. Findings show that the prospect of increase in future sales decreases cost stickiness in the case of cost of goods sold and this stickiness is also decreased more when managers are more optimistic about future sales. It was also found that stickiness of sales, general and administrative costs is increased when managers are optimistic about future sales and this stickiness is more when managers are more optimistic.