Honor Thy Creditors Beforan Thy Shareholders: Are the Profits of Chinese State-Owned Enterprises Real?
Chinese state-owned enterprises (SOEs) have become quite profitable recently. As the largest shareholder, the state has not asked SOEs to pay dividends in the past. Therefore, some have suggested that the state should ask SOEs to pay dividends. Indeed, the Chinese government has adopted this policy advice and started to demand back dividend payments starting from 2008. Although we do not question the soundness of the dividend policy, the point we raise is whether those profits are real if all costs owed by SOEs are properly accounted for. Among others, we are interested in investigating whether the profits of SOEs are still as large as they claim if they were to pay a market interest rate. Using a representative sample of corporate China, we find that the costs of financing for SOEs are significantly lower than for other companies after controlling for some fundamental factors for profitability and individual firm characteristics. In addition, our estimates show that if SOEs were to pay a market interest rate, their existing profits would be entirely wiped out. Our findings suggest that SOEs are still benefiting from credit subsidies, and they are not yet subject to the market interest rates. In an environment where credit rights are not fully respected, dividend policy, though important, should come second and not first. (c) 2010 The Earth Institute at Columbia University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 9 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 (October)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://mitpress.mit.edu/journals/|
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.mitpressjournals.org/loi/asep|
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Cull, Robert & Xu, Lixin Colin, 2000. "Bureaucrats, State Banks, and the Efficiency of Credit Allocation: The Experience of Chinese State-Owned Enterprises," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 1-31, March.
- Chong-En Bai & Jiangyong Lu & Zhigang Tao, 2006. "The Multitask Theory of State Enterprise Reform: Empirical Evidence from China," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 353-357, May.
- Cull, Robert & Xu, Lixin Colin, 2003. "Who gets credit? The behavior of bureaucrats and state banks in allocating credit to Chinese state-owned enterprises," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 533-559, August.
- Loren Brandt & Hongbin Li, 2002.
"Bank Discrimination in Transition Economies: Ideology, Information or Incentives?,"
William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series
517, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
- Brandt, Loren & Li, Hongbin, 2003. "Bank discrimination in transition economies: ideology, information, or incentives?," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 387-413, September.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:tpr:asiaec:v:9:y:2010:i:3:p:50-71. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Anna Pollock-Nelson)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.