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The Capital Structure Puzzle: Another Look At The Evidence

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  • Michael J. Barclay
  • Clifford W. Smith
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    Abstract

    Since the formulation of the M & M irrelevance propositions 40 years ago, financial economists have been debating whether there is such a thing as optimal capital structure-a proportion of debt to equity that maximizes current firm value. Some finance scholars have followed M & M by arguing that both capital structure and dividend policy are largely "irrelevant" in the sense that they have no significant, predictable effects on corporate market values. Another school of thought holds that corporate financing choices reflect an attempt by corporate managers to balance the tax shields and disciplinary benefits of greater debt against the increased probability and costs of financial distress. Yet another theory says that companies do not have capital structure targets, but instead follow a financial "pecking order" in which retained earnings are preferred to outside financing, and debt is preferred to equity when outside funding is required. 1999 Morgan Stanley.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Morgan Stanley in its journal Journal of Applied Corporate Finance.

    Volume (Year): 12 (1999)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 8-20

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    Handle: RePEc:bla:jacrfn:v:12:y:1999:i:1:p:8-20

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    Cited by:
    1. Michael J. Barclay & Erwan Morellec & Clifford W. Smith, 2003. "On the debt Capacityof growth Options," FAME Research Paper Series rp121, International Center for Financial Asset Management and Engineering.
    2. W. Allard Bruinshoofd & Leo de Haan, 2012. "Market timing and corporate capital structure: a transatlantic comparison," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(28), pages 3691-3703, October.
    3. Datta, Rajib & Chowdhury, Tasnim & Mohajan, Haradhan, 2013. "Reassess of capital structure theories," MPRA Paper 51165, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 10 Jul 2013.
    4. Majumdar, Raju, 2013. "On the alternative proxies for estimating firm growth in empirical corporate finance literature: Evidence from Indian manufacturing sector," MPRA Paper 44874, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Majumdar, Raju, 2013. "A Reinterpretation of the Relation between Market-to-book ratio and Corporate Borrowing," MPRA Paper 52398, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Javed, Attiya Yasmin & Imad, Qaisar, 2012. "A decomposition analysis of capital structure: evidence from Pakistan’s manufacturing sector," MPRA Paper 39371, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Nadeem Ahmed Sheikh & Zongjun Wang, 2011. "Determinants of capital structure: An empirical study of firms in manufacturing industry of Pakistan," Managerial Finance, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 37(2), pages 117-133, February.
    8. Clara Cardone & María J. Casasola, 2003. "What Do We Know About The Financial Behaviour Of The Spanish Sme?: An Empirical Analysis," Business Economics Working Papers wb033708, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía de la Empresa.
    9. A. A. Bevan & J. Danbolt, 2004. "Testing for inconsistencies in the estimation of UK capital structure determinants," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(1), pages 55-66.
    10. Howard Qi & Sheen Liu & Dean Johnson, 2012. "A model for risky cash flows and tax shields," Journal of Economics and Finance, Springer, vol. 36(4), pages 868-881, October.
    11. Mateev, Miroslav & Poutziouris, Panikkos & Ivanov, Konstantin, 2013. "On the determinants of SME capital structure in Central and Eastern Europe: A dynamic panel analysis," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 28-51.
    12. Dimiter Rafailov, 2003. "Determinants of the capital structure of the Bulgarian firms," Economic Thought journal, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences - Economic Research Institute, issue 1, pages 47-65.
    13. Francisco Sogorb- Mira, 2002. "How Sme Uniqueness Affects Capital Structure: Evidence From A 1994-1998 Spanish Data Panel," Working Papers. Serie EC 2002-18, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
    14. Hyytinen, Ari & Pajarinen, Mika, 2002. "Financing of Technology-Intensive Small Business: Some Evidence on the Uniqueness of the ICT Industry," Discussion Papers 813, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
    15. Shih-Chuan Tsai, 2005. "Dynamic Models of Investment Distortions," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 25(4), pages 357-381, December.
    16. Bassam Fattouh & Laurence Harris & Pasquale Scaramozzino, 2008. "Non-linearity in the determinants of capital structure: evidence from UK firms," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 34(3), pages 417-438, June.
    17. Stewart C. Myers, 2001. "Capital Structure," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(2), pages 81-102, Spring.

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