Dividends and politics
This paper contributes to a growing literature on politics and corporate governance by providing an empirical analysis of the impact of political factors on dividend payouts. The focus is on the determinants of dividend policy in U.K. public companies between 1949 and 2002. We augment Lintner's [Lintner, J., 1956. Distribution of incomes of corporations among dividends, retained earnings, and taxes. American Economic Review 46, 97-113.] partial adjustment model by including measures of politics and test the model using aggregate annual dividends and earnings data. We find neither the political placement of the party in power nor regulations explicitly designed to regulate corporate behaviour correlate in the direction political theories of corporate governance would predict.
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