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Tax Externalities of Equity Mutual Funds

Author

Listed:
  • Dickson, Joel M.
  • Shoven, John B.
  • Sialm, Clemens

Abstract

Investors holding mutual funds in taxable accounts face a classic externality. The after-tax return of their investment depends on the behavior of others. In particular, redemptions may force the mutual fund to sell some of its equity positions in order to pay off the liquidating investors. As a result, it may be forced to distribute taxable capital gains to its shareholders. On the other hand, new investors convey a positive externality upon existing investors by diluting the unrealized capital gain position of the fund. This paper's simulations show that these externalities are important determinants of the after-tax performance of equity mutual funds.

Suggested Citation

  • Dickson, Joel M. & Shoven, John B. & Sialm, Clemens, 2000. "Tax Externalities of Equity Mutual Funds," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 53(3), pages 607-628, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:ntj:journl:v:53:y:2000:i:3:p:607-28
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Joel M. Dickson & John B. Shoven, 1994. "A Stock Index Mutual Fund Without Net Capital Gains Realizations," NBER Working Papers 4717, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Barclay, Michael J. & Pearson, Neil D. & Weisbach, Michael S., 1998. "Open-end mutual funds and capital-gains taxes," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 3-43, July.
    3. Bergstresser, Daniel & Poterba, James, 2002. "Do after-tax returns affect mutual fund inflows?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 381-414, March.
    4. Carhart, Mark M, 1997. " On Persistence in Mutual Fund Performance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(1), pages 57-82, March.
    5. James M. Poterba & Andrew A. Samwick, 1995. "Stock Ownership Patterns, Stock Market Fluctuations, and Consumption," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 26(2), pages 295-372.
    6. Erik R. Sirri & Peter Tufano, 1998. "Costly Search and Mutual Fund Flows," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(5), pages 1589-1622, October.
    7. Joel M. Dickson & John B. Shoven, 1995. "Taxation and Mutual Funds: An Investor Perspective," NBER Chapters,in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 9, pages 151-180 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Dubofsky, David A., 2010. "Mutual fund portfolio trading and investor flow," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 802-812, April.
    2. 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.
    3. James M. Poterba & John B. Shoven, 2002. "Exchange-Traded Funds: A New Investment Option for Taxable Investors," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 422-427, May.
    4. Marcin Kacperczyk & Clemens Sialm & Lu Zheng, 2008. "Unobserved Actions of Mutual Funds," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 21(6), pages 2379-2416, November.
    5. Chen, Qi & Goldstein, Itay & Jiang, Wei, 2010. "Payoff complementarities and financial fragility: Evidence from mutual fund outflows," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(2), pages 239-262, August.
    6. Clemens Sialm & Laura T. Starks & Hanjiang Zhang, 2015. "Defined Contribution Pension Plans: Sticky or Discerning Money?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 70(2), pages 805-838, April.
    7. Shoven, John B. & Sialm, Clemens, 2004. "Asset location in tax-deferred and conventional savings accounts," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1-2), pages 23-38, January.
    8. Fong, Kingsley Y.L. & Gallagher, David R. & Lau, Sarah S.W. & Swan, Peter L., 2009. "Do active fund managers care about capital gains tax efficiency?," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 257-270, April.
    9. Clemens Sialm & Hanjiang Zhang, 2015. "Tax-Efficient Asset Management: Evidence from Equity Mutual Funds," NBER Working Papers 21060, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Woodrow T. Johnson & James M. Poterba, 2008. "Taxes and Mutual Fund Inflows Around Distribution Dates," NBER Working Papers 13884, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Johnson, Woodrow T. & Poterba, James M., 2016. "The effect of taxes on shareholder inflows around mutual fund distribution dates," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 7-19.
    12. James M. Poterba & John B. Shoven & Clemens Sialm, 2000. "Asset Location for Retirement Savers," NBER Working Papers 7991, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Greene, Jason T. & Hodges, Charles W. & Rakowski, David A., 2007. "Daily mutual fund flows and redemption policies," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(12), pages 3822-3842, December.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G23 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Non-bank Financial Institutions; Financial Instruments; Institutional Investors
    • H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies

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