Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Multinationals and the High Cash Holdings Puzzle

Contents:

Author Info

  • Lee Pinkowitz
  • René M. Stulz
  • Rohan Williamson
Registered author(s):

    Abstract

    Defining as normal cash holdings the holdings a firm with the same characteristics would have had in the late 1990s, we find that the abnormal cash holdings of U.S. firms after the crisis represent on average 1.86% of assets. While U.S. firms held less cash than comparable foreign firms in the late 1990s, by 2010 they hold more. However, only U.S. multinational firms experience an increase in abnormal cash holdings during the 2000s. U.S. multinational firms had cash holdings similar to those of purely domestic firms in the late 1990s, but they hold over 3% more assets in cash than comparable purely domestic firms after the crisis. Further, U.S. multinationals increased their cash holdings since the late 1990s relative to foreign multinationals by roughly the same percentage as they increased their cash holdings relative to U.S. domestic firms. A detailed analysis shows that the increase in cash holdings of multinational firms cannot be explained by the tax treatment of profit repatriations, that it is intrinsically linked to their R&D intensity, and that firms that become multinational do not increase their abnormal cash holdings after they become multinational. There is no evidence that poor investment opportunities, regulation, or poor governance can explain the abnormal cash holdings of U.S. firms after the crisis.

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w18120.pdf
    Download Restriction: Access to the full text is generally limited to series subscribers, however if the top level domain of the client browser is in a developing country or transition economy free access is provided. More information about subscriptions and free access is available at http://www.nber.org/wwphelp.html. Free access is also available to older working papers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 18120.

    as in new window
    Length:
    Date of creation: Jun 2012
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:18120

    Note: CF
    Contact details of provider:
    Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
    Phone: 617-868-3900
    Email:
    Web page: http://www.nber.org
    More information through EDIRC

    Related research

    Keywords:

    Find related papers by JEL classification:

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    References

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
    as in new window
    1. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silane & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1996. "Law and Finance," NBER Working Papers 5661, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. repec:fth:michin:282 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. David McLean, R., 2011. "Share issuance and cash savings," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(3), pages 693-715, March.
    4. Paul A. Gompers & Joy L. Ishii & Andrew Metrick, 2001. "Corporate Governance and Equity Prices," NBER Working Papers 8449, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Fritz Foley, C. & Hartzell, Jay C. & Titman, Sheridan & Twite, Garry, 2007. "Why do firms hold so much cash? A tax-based explanation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(3), pages 579-607, December.
    6. Morck, R. & Yeung, B., 1991. "Why Investors Value Multinationality," Working Papers 282, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
    7. Dittmar, Amy & Mahrt-Smith, Jan, 2007. "Corporate governance and the value of cash holdings," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 599-634, March.
    8. Dhammika Dharmapala & C. Fritz Foley & Kristin J. Forbes, 2009. "Watch What I Do, Not What I Say: The Unintended Consequences of the Homeland Investment Act," NBER Working Papers 15023, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Bargeron, Leonce L. & Lehn, Kenneth M. & Zutter, Chad J., 2010. "Sarbanes-Oxley and corporate risk-taking," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1-2), pages 34-52, February.
    10. Thomas W. Bates & Kathleen M. Kahle & René M. Stulz, 2009. "Why Do U.S. Firms Hold So Much More Cash than They Used To?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 64(5), pages 1985-2021, October.
    11. Heitor Almeida & Murillo Campello & Michael S. Weisbach, 2004. "The Cash Flow Sensitivity of Cash," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(4), pages 1777-1804, 08.
    12. Ran Duchin, 2010. "Cash Holdings and Corporate Diversification," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 65(3), pages 955-992, 06.
    13. Jensen, Michael C, 1986. "Agency Costs of Free Cash Flow, Corporate Finance, and Takeovers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 323-29, May.
    14. Charles J. Hadlock & Joshua R. Pierce, 2010. "New Evidence on Measuring Financial Constraints: Moving Beyond the KZ Index," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 23(5), pages 1909-1940.
    15. Tim Opler & Lee Pinkowitz & Rene Stulz & Rohan Williamson, 1997. "The Determinants and Implications of Corporate Cash Holdings," NBER Working Papers 6234, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Dittmar, Amy & Mahrt-Smith, Jan & Servaes, Henri, 2003. "International Corporate Governance and Corporate Cash Holdings," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 38(01), pages 111-133, March.
    17. Ivalina Kalcheva & Karl V. Lins, 2007. "International Evidence on Cash Holdings and Expected Managerial Agency Problems," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 20(4), pages 1087-1112.
    18. Pinkowitz, Lee & Williamson, Rohan, 2001. "Bank Power and Cash Holdings: Evidence from Japan," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 14(4), pages 1059-82.
    19. Jennifer Blouin & Linda Krull, 2009. "Bringing It Home: A Study of the Incentives Surrounding the Repatriation of Foreign Earnings Under the American Jobs Creation Act of 2004," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(4), pages 1027-1059, 09.
    20. Litvak, Kate, 2007. "The effect of the Sarbanes-Oxley act on non-US companies cross-listed in the US," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 13(2-3), pages 195-228, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as in new window

    Cited by:
    1. Bridgman, Benjamin, 2014. "Do intangible assets explain high U.S. foreign direct investment returns?," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 159-171.
    2. Wacker, Konstantin M., 2013. "On the measurement of foreign direct investment and its relationship to activities of multinational corporations," Working Paper Series 1614, European Central Bank.
    3. Juan M. Sánchez & Emircan Yurdagal, 2012. "Can repatriation taxes explain the recent increase in cash holdings?," Economic Synopses, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
    4. Juan M. Sánchez & Emircan Yurdagul, 2013. "Why are U.S. firms holding so much cash? an exploration of cross-sectional variation," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue July, pages 293-325.

    Lists

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:18120. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.