Hellenic Open University Conferences, International Conference on Business & Economics of the Hellenic Open University 2017

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How to disgorge less taxed money to investors: Dividends or returns of capital?
Apostolos Dasilas, Chris Grose

##manager.scheduler.building##: Titania
##manager.scheduler.room##: Platon
Date: 2017-04-22 09:00 AM – 10:45 AM
Last modified: 2017-04-11

Abstract


This study attempts to resolve the puzzle regarding the announcement effects of cash distributions. The introduction of tax on dividend income since 2009 has led many Greek listed companies to seek alternative ways of distributing untaxable income, at personal level, to shareholders, mainly through the form of returns of capital. Employing a unique dataset of 130 returns of capital and a control sample of 890 dividends between 2000 and 2014, we investigate the stock price behavior surrounding the announcement of these cash distributions. The results from the event study reveal a statistically significant market reaction on the announcement day for both cash distributions; however that of returns of capital was more than double compared to dividends (1.53% vs. 0.72%). The market reaction was even stronger when firms opting to distribute a dividend and a return of capital contemporaneously. Regression analysis delves into the determinants of market reaction documenting that dividend or return of capital yield, firm size and prior earnings growth explain much of stock price appreciation on the announcement dates.


Keywords


Dividends, returns of capital, wealth effects, Athens Stock Exchange.

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