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Are Dividend Omissions Truly the Cruelest Cut of All?

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  • Christie, William G.

Abstract

Signaling and agency cost theories of dividend policy predict that omissions will produce a larger average decline in equity values than will reductions of less than 100 percent. However, this paper identifies a U-shaped relation between announcement day risk-adjusted excess returns and the percentage decline in dividends. The significantly smaller than expected price reaction to dividend omissions cannot be traced to growth opportunities, nor to a tendency for firms to delay omission announcements. While omitting firms provide higher per share dividends within five years of the dividend action than do firms that severely reduce payments, future dividends are unrelated to the market's response.

Suggested Citation

  • Christie, William G., 1994. "Are Dividend Omissions Truly the Cruelest Cut of All?," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 29(03), pages 459-480, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:jfinqa:v:29:y:1994:i:03:p:459-480_00
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    1. repec:bla:jfnres:v:40:y:2017:i:3:p:287-313 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Alangar, Sadhana & Bathala, Chenchuramaiah T & Rao, Ramesh P, 1999. "The Effect of Institutional Interest on the Information Content of Dividend-Change Announcements," Journal of Financial Research, Southern Finance Association;Southwestern Finance Association, vol. 22(4), pages 429-448, Winter.
    3. Goergen, Marc & Renneboog, Luc & Correia da Silva, Luis, 2005. "When do German firms change their dividends?," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 11(1-2), pages 375-399, March.
    4. von Eije, Henk & Goyal, Abhinav & Muckley, Cal B., 2014. "Does the information content of payout initiations and omissions influence firm risks?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 183(2), pages 222-229.
    5. Jensen, Gerald R. & Lundstrum, Leonard L. & Miller, Robert E., 2010. "What do dividend reductions signal?," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 16(5), pages 736-747, December.
    6. Eva Liljeblom & Sabur Mollah & Patrik Rotter, 2015. "Do dividends signal future earnings in the Nordic stock markets?," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 44(3), pages 493-511, April.
    7. Low, Soo-Wah & Glorfeld, Louis & Hearth, Douglas & Rimbey, James N., 2001. "The link between bank monitoring and corporate dividend policy: The case of dividend omissions," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(11), pages 2069-2087, November.
    8. Bernhardt, Dan & Douglas, Alan & Robertson, Fiona, 2005. "Testing dividend signaling models," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 77-98, January.
    9. Daniel, Naveen D. & Denis, David J. & Naveen, Lalitha, 2008. "Do firms manage earnings to meet dividend thresholds," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 2-26, March.
    10. Bozos, Konstantinos & Nikolopoulos, Konstantinos & Ramgandhi, Ghanamaruthy, 2011. "Dividend signaling under economic adversity: Evidence from the London Stock Exchange," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 20(5), pages 364-374.
    11. Arora, Seema, 2000. "Green and Competitive? Evidence from the Stock Market," Research Papers 1650, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.

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