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Firm structure and corporate cash holdings

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  • Subramaniam, Venkat
  • Tang, Tony T.
  • Yue, Heng
  • Zhou, Xin
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Abstract

We analyze whether the organizational structure of firms (i.e., whether a firm is diversified or focused) affects their cash holdings. Using Compustat firm level and segment-level data, we find that diversified firms hold significantly less cash than their focused counterparts. Our results are robust to industry adjustments at the segment level and to different factors previously found to be important determinants of cash holdings. Using time-series, cross-sectional, and additional robustness tests we are able to attribute the lower cash holdings among diversified firms to complementary growth opportunities across the different segments of these firms and the availability of active internal capital markets. We find that the other theories that rely on the potentially effective use of asset sales of non-core segments of diversified firms to generate cash, and the increased agency/influence costs in diversified firms do not offer an economically significant explanation for the lower cash holdings among diversified firms.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Corporate Finance.

Volume (Year): 17 (2011)
Issue (Month): 3 (June)
Pages: 759-773

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Handle: RePEc:eee:corfin:v:17:y:2011:i:3:p:759-773

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jcorpfin

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Keywords: Firm structure Cash holdings Internal capital markets Asset sales Agency costs;

References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Rudolph, Christin & Schwetzler, Bernhard, 2014. "Mountain or molehill? Downward biases in the conglomerate discount measure," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 420-431.
  2. Rashid Ameer, 2012. "Impact of cash holdings and ownership concentration on firm valuation: Empirical evidence from Australia," Review of Accounting and Finance, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 11(4), pages 448-467.
  3. Denis, David J., 2011. "Financial flexibility and corporate liquidity," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 667-674, June.

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