Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=203092
 
 

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Disappearing Dividends: Changing Firm Characteristics Or Lower Propensity To Pay?


Eugene F. Fama


University of Chicago - Finance

Kenneth R. French


Dartmouth College - Tuck School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

June 2000

AFA 2001 New Orleans; CRSP Working Paper No. 509

Abstract:     
The percent of firms paying cash dividends falls from 66.5 in 1978 to 20.8 in 1999. The decline is due in part to the changing characteristics of publicly traded firms. Fed by new lists, the population of publicly traded firms tilts increasingly toward small firms with low profitability and strong growth opportunities characteristics typical of firms that have never paid dividends. More interesting, we also show that controlling for characteristics, firms become less likely to pay dividends. This lower propensity to pay is at least as important as changing characteristics in the declining incidence of dividend payers.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 53

JEL Classification: G35

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Date posted: February 3, 2000  

Suggested Citation

Fama, Eugene F. and French, Kenneth R., Disappearing Dividends: Changing Firm Characteristics Or Lower Propensity To Pay? (June 2000). AFA 2001 New Orleans; CRSP Working Paper No. 509. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=203092 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.203092

Contact Information

Eugene F. Fama (Contact Author)
University of Chicago - Finance ( email )
5807 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
773-702-7282 (Phone)
773-702-9937 (Fax)
Kenneth R. French
Dartmouth College - Tuck School of Business ( email )
Hanover, NH 03755
United States
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
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