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Did Dividends Increase Immediately After the 2003 Reduction in Tax Rates?

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Listed:
  • Jennifer L. Blouin
  • Jana Smith Raedy
  • Douglas A. Shackelford

Abstract

The Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 reduces the maximum statutory personal tax rate on dividends from 38.1 percent to 15 percent. This study analyzes dividend declarations in the quarter following passage. Aggregate dividends rose by 9 percent when boards of directors first met following enactment. Consistent with the dividend changes being tax-motivated, they are increasing in the percentage of the firm held by individuals. Dividend changes also increased with insider ownership, consistent with managers acting in their own interests. However, these results are limited primarily to firms that made large, special dividends. We find little evidence of an increase in regular, quarterly dividend payments.

Suggested Citation

  • Jennifer L. Blouin & Jana Smith Raedy & Douglas A. Shackelford, 2004. "Did Dividends Increase Immediately After the 2003 Reduction in Tax Rates?," NBER Working Papers 10301, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:10301
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Eugene F. Fama & Kenneth R. French, 2001. "Disappearing Dividends: Changing Firm Characteristics Or Lower Propensity To Pay?," Journal of Applied Corporate Finance, Morgan Stanley, vol. 14(1), pages 67-79.
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    5. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 2000. "Agency Problems and Dividend Policies around the World," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(1), pages 1-33, February.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Mihir A. Desai & Austan D. Goolsbee, 2004. "Investment, Fiscal Policy, and Capital Overhang," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 35(2), pages 285-355.
    2. Buchanan, Bonnie G. & Cao, Cathy Xuying & Liljeblom, Eva & Weihrich, Susan, 2017. "Uncertainty and firm dividend policy—A natural experiment," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 179-197.
    3. Matthew D. Shapiro & Christopher L. House, 2006. "Phased-In Tax Cuts and Economic Activity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(5), pages 1835-1849, December.
    4. Korinek, Anton & Stiglitz, Joseph E., 2009. "Dividend taxation and intertemporal tax arbitrage," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(1-2), pages 142-159, February.
    5. repec:spr:jecfin:v:41:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s12197-016-9362-x is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Jeffrey R. Brown & Nellie Liang & Scott Weisbenner, 2007. "Executive Financial Incentives and Payout Policy: Firm Responses to the 2003 Dividend Tax Cut," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(4), pages 1935-1965, August.
    7. Jacob, Martin, 2010. "Taxation, Dividends, and Share Repurchases: Taking Evidence Global," Working Paper Series, Center for Fiscal Studies 2010:10, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
    8. Jesse Edgerton, 2010. "Effects of the 2003 dividend tax cut: evidence from real estate investment trusts," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2010-34, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    9. Christian Keuschnigg & Evelyn Ribi, 2010. "Business Taxation, Corporate Finance and Economic Performance," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2010 2010-04, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
    10. Randall Morck & Bernard Yeung, 2005. "Dividend Taxation and Corporate Governance," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(3), pages 163-180, Summer.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • G35 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Payout Policy

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