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New evidence of the impact of dividend taxation and on the identity of the marginal investor

  • Leonie Bell
  • Tim Jenkinson

This paper examines the impact of a major change in dividend taxation introduced in the UK in July 1997. The reform was structured in such a way that the immediate impact fell almost entirely on the largest investor class in the UK, namely pension funds. We analyse the behaviour of share prices around the ex-dividend day both before and after the reform to test clientele effects and the impact of taxation on the valuation of companies. We find strong clientele effects in the UK, which are consistent with the distortions introduced by the tax system (before the reform dividend income was tax-advantaged in the UK). We also find significant changes in the valuation of dividend income after the reform, in particular for high-yielding companies. These results provide strong support for the hypothesis that taxation affects the valuation of companies, and that pension funds were the effective marginal investors for high-yielding companies.

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Paper provided by Oxford Financial Research Centre in its series OFRC Working Papers Series with number 2001fe14.

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Date of creation: 2001
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Handle: RePEc:sbs:wpsefe:2001fe14
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.finance.ox.ac.uk
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  1. Lasfer, M Ameziane, 1995. " Ex-day Behavior: Tax or Short-Term Trading Effects," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(3), pages 875-97, July.
  2. John H. Boyd & Ravi Jagannathan, 1994. "Ex-dividend price behavior of common stocks," Staff Report 173, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  3. Murray Frank & Ravi Jagannathan, 1997. "Why do stock prices drop by less than the value of the dividend? Evidence from a country without taxes," Staff Report 229, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  4. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
  5. Roger H. Gordon & David F. Bradford, 1980. "Taxation and the stock market valuation of capital gains and dividends : Theory and emphirical results," NBER Chapters, in: Econometric Studies in Public Finance, pages 109-136 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. James M. Poterba & Lawrence H. Summers, 1984. "The Economic Effects of Dividend Taxation," NBER Working Papers 1353, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Lakonishok, Josef & Vermaelen, Theo, 1986. "Tax-induced trading around ex-dividend days," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 287-319, July.
  8. James M. Poterba & Lawrence H. Summers, 1984. "New Evidence that Taxes Affect the Valuation of Dividends," NBER Working Papers 1288, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Brown, Stephen J. & Warner, Jerold B., 1985. "Using daily stock returns : The case of event studies," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 3-31, March.
  10. Elton, Edwin J & Gruber, Martin J, 1970. "Marginal Stockholder Tax Rates and the Clientele Effect," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 52(1), pages 68-74, February.
  11. Ang, James S & Blackwell, David W & Megginson, William L, 1991. " The Effect of Taxes on the Relative Valuation of Dividends and Capital Gains: Evidence from Dual-Class British Investment Trusts," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 46(1), pages 383-99, March.
  12. Karpoff, Jonathan M. & Walkling, Ralph A., 1988. "Short-term trading around ex-dividend days : Additional evidence," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 291-298, September.
  13. Lakonishok, Josef & Vermaelen, Theo, 1983. " Tax Reform and Ex-Dividend Day Behavior," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 38(4), pages 1157-79, September.
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