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Dividend taxation and Corporate investment: A comparative study between the classical system and imputation system of dividend taxation in the United States and Australia

  • Robert Brooks
  • Bhavish Jugurnath
  • Mark Stewart

In recent times a number of countries initiated some important tax reforms to eliminate the distortions of double taxation. In this context, Australia adopted a dividend imputation system in 1987, while the US employed the 1986 Tax Reform Act (TRA). The analysis examines the effect on the level of corporate capital investment on proxies for corporate tax rates, financial leverage, liquidity, capital intensity and firm size after controlling for the tax reforms. The empirical results provide evidence that: (1) dividend imputation as introduced in Australia is an effective way to reduce the distortions caused by the traditional system of taxation. (2) Compared with the TRA, dividend imputation has been better able to positively stimulate corporate capital investment. (3) TRA effect on corporate investment is more pronounced in the US for firms having a net operating loss. (4) Corporate tax rates play a role in corporate investment decision in Australia

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Paper provided by Econometric Society in its series Econometric Society 2004 Australasian Meetings with number 97.

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Date of creation: 11 Aug 2004
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Handle: RePEc:ecm:ausm04:97
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  1. Fama, Eugene F, 1974. "The Empirical Relationships Between the Dividend and Investment Decisions of Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(3), pages 304-18, June.
  2. Randall Morck, 2003. "Why Some Double Taxation Might Make Sense: The Special Case of Inter-corporate Dividends," NBER Working Papers 9651, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Abrutyn, Stephanie & Turner, Robert W., 1990. "Taxes and Firms' Dividend Policies: Survey Results," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 43(4), pages 491-96, December.
  4. Gupta, Sanjay & Newberry, Kaye, 1997. "Determinants of the variability in corporate effective tax rates: Evidence from longitudinal data," Journal of Accounting and Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 1-34.
  5. Seppo Kari & Jouko Ylä-Liedenpohja, 2002. "Classical Corporation Tax as a Global Means of Tax Harmonization," Discussion Papers 266, Government Institute for Economic Research Finland (VATT).
  6. McCabe, George M., 1979. "The Empirical Relationship Between Investment and Financing: A New Look," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 14(01), pages 119-135, March.
  7. Higgins, Robert C., 1972. "The Corporate Dividend-Saving Decision," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(02), pages 1527-1541, March.
  8. Gilchrist, Simon & Himmelberg, Charles P., 1995. "Evidence on the role of cash flow for investment," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 541-572, December.
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