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Dividend Policies in an Unregulated Market: The London Stock Exchange, 1895--1905

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  • Fabio Braggion
  • Lyndon Moore

Abstract

Miller and Modigliani (1961) show that in perfect and complete financial markets a firm's value is unaffected by its dividend policy. Much of the more recent research has demonstrated that dividend policy becomes important in the presence of taxation, asymmetric information, incomplete contracts, institutional constraints, and transaction costs. By examining the effects of dividend policies on 475 British firms existing between 1895 and 1905, and consequently operating in an environment of very low taxation with an absence of institutional constraints, we find strong support for asymmetric information theories of dividend policy, and little support for agency models. The Author 2011. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Society for Financial Studies. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com., Oxford University Press.

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  • Fabio Braggion & Lyndon Moore, 2011. "Dividend Policies in an Unregulated Market: The London Stock Exchange, 1895--1905," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 24(9), pages 2935-2973.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:rfinst:v:24:y:2011:i:9:p:2935-2973
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    1. Michael Buchner & Tobias A. Jopp, 2019. "Full steam ahead: Insider knowledge, stock trading and the nationalization of the railways in Prussia around 1879," Working Papers 0151, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    2. Ye, Qing & Turner, John D., 2014. "The cross-section of stock returns in an early stock market," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 114-123.
    3. Moortgat, Leentje & Annaert, Jan & Deloof, Marc, 2017. "Investor protection, taxation and dividend policy: Long-run evidence, 1838–2012," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 85(C), pages 113-131.
    4. Braggion, Fabio & Giannetti, Mariassunta, 2019. "Changing corporate governance norms: Evidence from dual class shares in the UK," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 15-27.
    5. Eric Hilt, 2014. "History of American Corporate Governance: Law, Institutions, and Politics," Annual Review of Financial Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 6(1), pages 1-21, December.
    6. Amanda Gregg & Steven Nafziger, 2019. "Capital structure and corporate performance in late Imperial Russia," European Review of Economic History, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(4), pages 446-481.
    7. Acheson, Graeme G. & Campbell, Gareth & Turner, John D., 2016. "Common law and the origin of shareholder protection," eabh Papers 16-03, The European Association for Banking and Financial History (EABH).
    8. Turner, John D., 2014. "Financial history and financial economics," QUCEH Working Paper Series 14-03, Queen's University Belfast, Queen's University Centre for Economic History.
    9. Gregg, Amanda & Nafziger, Steven, 2020. "Financing nascent industry : Leverage, politics, and performance in Imperial Russia," BOFIT Discussion Papers 7/2020, Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition.
    10. Davies, Richard & Haldane, Andrew G. & Nielsen, Mette & Pezzini, Silvia, 2014. "Measuring the costs of short-termism," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 12(C), pages 16-25.
    11. Braggion, F. & Moore, L., 2011. "The Economic Benefits of Political Connections in Late Victorian Britain," Other publications TiSEM 0f305e3a-a699-4697-9679-5, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    12. Liu, Chinpiao & Chen, An-Sing, 2015. "Do firms use dividend changes to signal future profitability? A simultaneous equation analysis," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 194-207.
    13. Braggion, Fabio & Giannetti, Mariassunta, 2013. "Public Debate and Stock Prices: Evidence from the Voting Premium," CEPR Discussion Papers 9619, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    14. Booth, Laurence & Zhou, Jun, 2017. "Dividend policy: A selective review of results from around the world," Global Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 1-15.
    15. Fabio Braggion & Lyndon Moore, 2013. "How insiders traded before rules," Business History, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 55(4), pages 565-584, June.
    16. Braggion, Fabio & Moore, Lyndon, 2013. "The Economic Benefits of Political Connections in Late Victorian Britain," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 73(1), pages 142-176, March.
    17. Matthias Nnadi & Nyema Wogboroma & Bariyima Kabel, 2013. "Determinants of Dividend Policy: Evidence from Listed Firms in the African Stock Exchanges," Panoeconomicus, Savez ekonomista Vojvodine, Novi Sad, Serbia, vol. 60(6), pages 725-741, December.
    18. Braggion, F. & Moore, L., 2012. "How Insiders Traded before Rules," Other publications TiSEM f4f6a08a-280d-41f3-adc5-a, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    19. Graeme G. Acheson & Gareth Campbell & John D. Turner & Nadia Vanteeva, 2015. "Corporate ownership and control in Victorian Britain," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 68(3), pages 911-936, August.
    20. Luzi Hail & Ahmed Tahoun & Clare Wang, 2014. "Dividend Payouts and Information Shocks," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(2), pages 403-456, May.
    21. Jens Günther, 2017. "Capital market effects around dividend announcements: an analysis of the Berlin stock exchange in 1895," Accounting History Review, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 27(3), pages 249-278, September.
    22. Braggion, F., 2008. "Managers, Firms and (Secret) Social Networks : The Economics of Freemasonry," Discussion Paper 2008-36, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    23. Burhop, Carsten & Chambers, David & Cheffins, Brian, 2014. "Regulating IPOs: Evidence from going public in London, 1900–1913," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 60-76.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • N23 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
    • G35 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Payout Policy

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