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Government policy and ownership of equity securities

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  • Rydqvist, Kristian
  • Spizman, Joshua
  • Strebulaev, Ilya

Abstract

Since World War II, direct stock ownership by households across the globe has largely been replaced by indirect stock ownership by financial institutions. We argue that tax and retirement policies are among the factors behind these changes. We develop empirical measures of two tax incentives of holding stocks inside tax-deferred plans, tax-free investment income and the smoothing benefit. Using long time-series from eight countries, we show that the fraction of household ownership decreases with these measures of the tax benefits. This finding contributes to policy debates on effective taxation and to financial economics research on the long-term effects of taxation on corporate finance and asset prices.

Suggested Citation

  • Rydqvist, Kristian & Spizman, Joshua & Strebulaev, Ilya, 2014. "Government policy and ownership of equity securities," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(1), pages 70-85.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jfinec:v:111:y:2014:i:1:p:70-85
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jfineco.2013.09.001
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    Cited by:

    1. Abrahamson, Martin, 2016. "“Rookies to the stock market: A portrait of new shareholders”," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 565-576.
    2. Gramlich, Jacob P. & Grundl, Serafin J., 2017. "Estimating the Competitive Effects of Common Ownership," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2017-029, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.), revised 21 Apr 2017.
    3. Aneta Hryckiewicz & Piotr Mielus & Karolina Skorulska & Malgorzata Snarska, 2018. "Does a bank levy increase frictions on the interbank market?," Working Papers 2018-033, Warsaw School of Economics, Collegium of Economic Analysis.
    4. Babina, Tania & Jotikasthira, Chotibhak & Lundblad, Christian T & Ramadorai, Tarun, 2015. "Heterogenous Taxes and Limited Risk Sharing: Evidence from Municipal Bonds," CEPR Discussion Papers 10971, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Elert, Niklas & Henrekson, Magnus & Stenkula, Mikael, 2017. "Institutional Reform for Innovation and Entrepreneurship: An Agenda for Europe," Working Paper Series 1150, Research Institute of Industrial Economics, revised 16 Feb 2017.
    6. Robert F. Stambaugh, 2014. "Investment Noise and Trends," NBER Working Papers 20072, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Stock ownership; Mutual funds; Pension funds; Tax-deferral;

    JEL classification:

    • G23 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Non-bank Financial Institutions; Financial Instruments; Institutional Investors
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • H22 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Incidence

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