IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Labor unions and tax aggressiveness

  • Chyz, James A.
  • Ching Leung, Winnie Siu
  • Zhen Li, Oliver
  • Meng Rui, Oliver

We examine the impact of unionization on firms' tax aggressiveness. We find a negative association between firms' tax aggressiveness and union power and a decrease in tax aggressiveness after labor union election wins. This relation is consistent with labor unions influencing managers' in one, or both, of two ways: (1) constraining managers' ability to invest in tax aggressiveness through increased monitoring; or (2) decreasing returns to tax aggressiveness that arise from unions' rent seeking behavior. We also find preliminary evidence that the market expects these reductions around union elections and discounts firms that likely add shareholder value via aggressive tax strategies.

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:
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

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.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Financial Economics.

Volume (Year): 108 (2013)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 675-698

in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:jfinec:v:108:y:2013:i:3:p:675-698
Contact details of provider: Web page:

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. Chen, Huafeng Jason & Kacperczyk, Marcin & Ortiz-Molina, Hernán, 2011. "Labor Unions, Operating Flexibility, and the Cost of Equity," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 46(01), pages 25-58, March.
  2. John R. Graham & Mark H. Lang & Douglas A. Shackelford, 2004. "Employee Stock Options, Corporate Taxes, and Debt Policy," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(4), pages 1585-1618, 08.
  3. Desai, Mihir A. & Dharmapala, Dhammika, 2006. "Corporate tax avoidance and high-powered incentives," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 145-179, January.
  4. Crocker, Keith J. & Slemrod, Joel, 2005. "Corporate tax evasion with agency costs," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(9-10), pages 1593-1610, September.
  5. Ruback, Richard S & Zimmerman, Martin B, 1984. "Unionization and Profitability: Evidence from the Capital Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(6), pages 1134-57, December.
  6. Merton, Robert C., 1973. "On the pricing of corporate debt: the risk structure of interest rates," Working papers 684-73., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  7. Sonja Olhoft Rego & Ryan Wilson, 2012. "Equity Risk Incentives and Corporate Tax Aggressiveness," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(3), pages 775-810, 06.
  8. Hanlon, Michelle & Heitzman, Shane, 2010. "A review of tax research," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2-3), pages 127-178, December.
  9. Rafael Gomez & Konstantinos Tzioumis, 2006. "What do unions do to executive compensation?," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19865, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  10. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:106:y:1991:i:1:p:231-54 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Graham, John R. & Tucker, Alan L., 2006. "Tax shelters and corporate debt policy," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(3), pages 563-594, September.
  12. Andrew K. Prevost & Ramesh P. Rao & Melissa A. Williams, 2012. "Labor Unions as Shareholder Activists: Champions or Detractors?," The Financial Review, Eastern Finance Association, vol. 47(2), pages 327-349, 05.
  13. Joel Slemrod, 2004. "The Economics of Corporate Tax Selfishness," NBER Working Papers 10858, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Mitchell A. Petersen, 2005. "Estimating Standard Errors in Finance Panel Data Sets: Comparing Approaches," NBER Working Papers 11280, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Klasa, Sandy & Maxwell, William F. & Ortiz-Molina, Hernán, 2009. "The strategic use of corporate cash holdings in collective bargaining with labor unions," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(3), pages 421-442, June.
  16. Kong-Pin Chen & C.Y. Cyrus Chu, 2005. "Internal Control vs. External Manipulation: A Model of Corporate Income Tax Evasion," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 36(4), pages 151-164, Winter.
  17. Shackelford, Douglas A. & Shevlin, Terry, 2001. "Empirical tax research in accounting," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1-3), pages 321-387, September.
  18. Chen, Shuping & Chen, Xia & Cheng, Qiang & Shevlin, Terry, 2010. "Are family firms more tax aggressive than non-family firms?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(1), pages 41-61, January.
  19. Gaspar, Jose-Miguel & Massa, Massimo & Matos, Pedro, 2005. "Shareholder investment horizons and the market for corporate control," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 135-165, April.
  20. Huafeng (JASON) Chen & Marcin Kacperczyk & Hernán Ortiz-Molina, 2011. "Do Nonfinancial Stakeholders Affect the Pricing of Risky Debt? Evidence from Unionized Workers," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 16(2), pages 347-383.
  21. David A. Matsa, 2010. "Capital Structure as a Strategic Variable: Evidence from Collective Bargaining," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 65(3), pages 1197-1232, 06.
  22. Faleye, Olubunmi & Mehrotra, Vikas & Morck, Randall, 2006. "When Labor Has a Voice in Corporate Governance," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 41(03), pages 489-510, September.
  23. Mihir A. Desai & Dhammika Dharmapala, 2005. "Corporate Tax Avoidance and Firm Value," NBER Working Papers 11241, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Desai, Mihir & Dyck, Alexander & Zingales, Luigi, 2004. "Theft and Taxes," CEPR Discussion Papers 4816, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  25. Connolly, Robert A & Hirsch, Barry T & Hirschey, Mark, 1986. "Union Rent Seeking, Intangible Capital, and Market Value of the Firm," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 68(4), pages 567-77, November.
  26. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:112:y:1997:i:1:p:169-215 is not listed on IDEAS
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

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

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jfinec:v:108:y:2013:i:3:p:675-698. 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: (Zhang, Lei)

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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.