Article

The dividend and share repurchase policies of Canadian firms: empirical evidence based on an alternative research design

Citation

de Jong A, van Dijk R & Veld C (2003) The dividend and share repurchase policies of Canadian firms: empirical evidence based on an alternative research design. International Review of Financial Analysis, 12 (4), pp. 349-377. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1057-5219%2803%2900030-9

Abstract
We empirically investigate dividend and share repurchase policies of Canadian firms. Our analysis contains two features that are uncommon in finance, while they are encountered in other fields of science. First, we use standard, simultaneous and nested logit models. The non-standard logit models are often used in recreational economics and marketing. By examining different model specifications, we test alternative descriptions of the behavior of decision-makers. Second, we use questionnaire data on firm characteristics. Collecting data by questionnaires is hardly ever done in finance, while it is the mainstream approach in sociology and organization. We have sent a questionnaire to the 500 largest non-financial Canadian companies listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange, of which 191 usable responses were returned. Our results are consistent with a structure in which the company first decides whether it wants to pay out cash to its shareholders or not. In the second stage the firm decides on the form of the payout: dividends, share repurchases or both. Payout is determined by free cash flow. The choice for dividends and repurchases depends on behavioral and tax preferences. Furthermore, the payout is less likely to be dividends if the company has executive stock option plans. Finally, we find evidence for the Brennan and Thakor (1990) model. According to this model the existence of asymmetric information amongst outsiders is associated with a preference for dividend payments over share repurchases.

Keywords
Dividends; share repurchases; payout decisions; nested logit models; questionnaire data; Corporations Finance Canada; Stockholders; Dividends; Investments

Journal
International Review of Financial Analysis: Volume 12, Issue 4

StatusPublished
Publication date31/12/2003
Publication date online10/04/2003
URLhttp://hdl.handle.net/1893/1525
PublisherElsevier
ISSN1057-5219