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L’impact de l’affectation du free cash flow sur la création de valeur actionnariale : le cas de la politique d’endettement et de dividendes des entreprises françaises cotées


  • Thierry Poulain-Rehm

    () (Université de Bordeaux 4)


(VF)Selon la théorie du free cash flow, l’endettement, tout comme la distribution de dividendes, en réduisant le free cash flow, permettraient de limiter le pouvoir discrétionnaire des dirigeants, et contribueraient à la création de valeur actionnariale. Cette théorie est infirmée par cette recherche selon laquelle l’affectation du free cash flow au service du remboursement de la dette exerce une influence négative, statistiquement significative, sur la richesse des actionnaires. Dans le même temps, l’impact d’un réinvestissement des fonds discrétionnaires sous forme de distribution de dividendes n’est pas décelable.(VA) Theory states that managers of low growth/high free cash flow firms engage in non-value-maximizing activities. Jensen (1986) argues debt, like dividends, mitigate the non-value-maximizing activities by reducing the level of free cash flow and hence contribute to shareholder value. However, this research shows that the payout of cash flow in excess, either in the form of debt service, or in the form of dividends, has no positive influence on shareholder value. These conclusions would thus infirm the implications of Jensen’s hypothesis.

Suggested Citation

  • Thierry Poulain-Rehm, 2005. "L’impact de l’affectation du free cash flow sur la création de valeur actionnariale : le cas de la politique d’endettement et de dividendes des entreprises françaises cotées," Revue Finance Contrôle Stratégie,, vol. 8(4), pages 205-238, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:dij:revfcs:v:8:y:2005:i:q4:p:205-238

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Eugene F. Fama & Kenneth R. French, 2001. "Disappearing Dividends: Changing Firm Characteristics Or Lower Propensity To Pay?," Journal of Applied Corporate Finance, Morgan Stanley, vol. 14(1), pages 67-79.
    2. Smith, Clifford Jr. & Watts, Ross L., 1992. "The investment opportunity set and corporate financing, dividend, and compensation policies," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 263-292, December.
    3. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1997. " A Survey of Corporate Governance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(2), pages 737-783, June.
    4. repec:hrv:faseco:30728046 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Morck, Randall & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1988. "Management ownership and market valuation : An empirical analysis," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1-2), pages 293-315, January.
    6. Bizjak, John M. & Brickley, James A. & Coles, Jeffrey L., 1993. "Stock-based incentive compensation and investment behavior," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(1-3), pages 349-372, April.
    7. Murphy, Kevin J., 1985. "Corporate performance and managerial remuneration : An empirical analysis," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(1-3), pages 11-42, April.
    8. Ross, Stephen A, 1973. "The Economic Theory of Agency: The Principal's Problem," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 63(2), pages 134-139, May.
    9. Stephen C. Vogt, 1997. "Cash Flow and Capital Spending: Evidence from Capital Expenditure Announcements," Financial Management, Financial Management Association, vol. 26(2), Summer.
    10. Nohel, Tom & Tarhan, Vefa, 1998. "Share repurchases and firm performance:: new evidence on the agency costs of free cash flow," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 187-222, August.
    11. Skinner, Douglas J., 1993. "The investment opportunity set and accounting procedure choice : Preliminary evidence," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 407-445, October.
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    More about this item


    free cash flow; coûts d’agence; endettement; distribution de dividendes; valeur actionnariale; free cash flow; agency costs; debt; dividends; shareholder value.;

    JEL classification:

    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill


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