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The Declining Information Content of Dividend Announcements and the Effects of Institutional Holdings

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  • Amihud, Yakov
  • Li, Kefei

Abstract

We propose an explanation for the “disappearing dividend” phenomenon: a decline in the information content of dividend announcements, which reduces the propensity of firms to use dividends as a costly signal. A reason for a decline in the information content of dividends is the rise in holdings by institutional investors that are more sophisticated and informed. Indeed, we find a decline in CAR at dividend change announcements since the mid–1970s. Across firms, CAR is a decreasing function of institutional holdings. Institutional investors exploit their superior information and buy before dividend increases. In addition, dividends are less likely to rise in firms with high institutional holdings.

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  • Amihud, Yakov & Li, Kefei, 2006. "The Declining Information Content of Dividend Announcements and the Effects of Institutional Holdings," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 41(03), pages 637-660, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:jfinqa:v:41:y:2006:i:03:p:637-660_00
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