Tax Haven Networks and the Role of the Big 4 Accountancy Firms

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This paper investigates the association between the Big 4 accountancy firms and the extent to which multinational enterprises build, manage and maintain their networks of tax haven subsidiaries. We extend internalisation theory and derive a number of hypotheses that are tested using count models on firm-level data. Our key findings demonstrate that there is a strong correlation and causal link between the size of an MNE’s tax haven network and their use of the Big 4. We therefore argue that public policy related to the role of auditors can have a significant impact on the tax avoidance behaviour of MNEs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-193
JournalJournal of World Business
Issue number2
Early online date8 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2018

Bibliographical note

© 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (

Funding: British Academy project (SG143332).


  • Tax havens, varieties of capitalism, corporate taxation, poisson regression, Big 4 accountancy firms


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