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Dividend Smoothing and Debt Ratings

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  • Aivazian, Varouj A.
  • Booth, Laurence
  • Cleary, Sean

Abstract

We find that firms that regularly access public debt (bond) markets are more likely to pay a dividend and subsequently follow a dividend smoothing policy than firms that rely exclusively on private (bank) debt. In particular, firms with bond ratings follow a traditional Lintner (1956) style dividend smoothing policy, where the influence of the prior dividend payment is very strong and the current dividend is relatively insensitive to current earnings. In contrast, firms without bond ratings flow through more of their earnings as dividends and display very little dividend smoothing behavior. In effect, they seem to follow a residual dividend policy.

Suggested Citation

  • Aivazian, Varouj A. & Booth, Laurence & Cleary, Sean, 2006. "Dividend Smoothing and Debt Ratings," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 41(02), pages 439-453, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:jfinqa:v:41:y:2006:i:02:p:439-453_00
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    Cited by:

    1. Andres, Christian & Hofbaur, Ulrich, 2017. "Do what you did four quarters ago: Trends and implications of quarterly dividends," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 139-158.
    2. Fairchild, Richard & Guney, Yilmaz & Thanatawee, Yordying, 2014. "Corporate dividend policy in Thailand: Theory and evidence," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 129-151.
    3. Leif Beisland & Dennis Frestad, 2013. "How fair-value accounting can influence firm hedging," Review of Derivatives Research, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 193-217, July.
    4. Andreas Charitou & Neophytos Lambertides & Giorgos Theodoulou, 2010. "The Effect of Past Earnings and Dividend Patterns on the Information Content of Dividends When Earnings Are Reduced," Abacus, Accounting Foundation, University of Sydney, vol. 46(2), pages 153-187.
    5. Szabolcs Szikszai & Tamas Badics, 2014. "Enhanced Funds Seeking Higher Returns," Working papers wpaper43, Financialisation, Economy, Society & Sustainable Development (FESSUD) Project.
    6. Brockman, Paul & Tresl, Jiri & Unlu, Emre, 2014. "The impact of insider trading laws on dividend payout policy," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 263-287.
    7. Basil Al-Najjar, 2012. "The determinants of board meetings: evidence from categorical analysis," Journal of Applied Accounting Research, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 13(2), pages 178-190, September.
    8. Karlo Kauko, 2016. "Does Opaqueness Make Equity Capital Expensive for Banks?," REVISTA DE ECONOMÍA DEL ROSARIO, UNIVERSIDAD DEL ROSARIO, vol. 17(2), pages 203-227, February.
    9. Andres, C. & Betzer, A. & Goergen, M. & Renneboog, L.D.R., 2008. "The Dividend Policy of German Firms," Discussion Paper 2008-67, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    10. Khamis Hamed Al-Yahyaee & Toan Pham & Terry Walter, 2010. "Dividend stability in a unique environment," Managerial Finance, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 36(10), pages 903-916, August.
    11. Andres, Christian & Betzer, André & Goergen, Marc & Renneboog, Luc, 2009. "Dividend policy of German firms: A panel data analysis of partial adjustment models," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 175-187, March.
    12. Kaivanto, Kim & Zinober, Alan, 2015. "When are Capital Structure Decisions Nonseparable from Production Planning? The Case of Generalized Royalty-Based Hybrid Finance," MPRA Paper 66963, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Kim Kaivanto & Alan Zinober, 2015. "When are capital structure decisions nonseparable from production planning?," Working Papers 96496260, Lancaster University Management School, Economics Department.
    14. Cheng-Few Lee & Woan-lih Liang & Fu-Lai Lin & Yating Yang, 2016. "Applications of simultaneous equations in finance research: methods and empirical results," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 47(4), pages 943-971, November.
    15. Benavides, Julian & Berggrun, Luis & Perafan, Hector, 2016. "Dividend payout policies: Evidence from Latin America," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 17(C), pages 197-210.
    16. repec:eee:glofin:v:34:y:2017:i:c:p:1-15 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Basil Al-Najjar & Yacine Belghitar, 2012. "The information content of cashflows in the context of dividend smoothing," Economic Issues Journal Articles, Economic Issues, vol. 17(2), pages 57-70, September.

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