Operating Performance and Free Cash Flow of Asset Buyers
We examine a sample of 552 firms that announce asset purchases. We find that the announcement period returns are negatively related to the amount of free cash flow for buyers with fewer growth opportunities. Compared to the year prior to the purchase, the mean long-run operating performance of asset buyers worsens in each of the three years following the transaction. Operating performance changes are negatively related to the amount of free cash flow, and the relationship is stronger for buyers with fewer growth opportunities. We also find that buyer firms experience a decline in the return on assets and asset turnover ratios. These findings are consistent with Jensen’s (1986) free cash flow theory.
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Volume (Year): 32 (2003)
Issue (Month): 4 (Winter)
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