Essays in corporate policy: dividend policy, index labeling effect, investment, and cash flow duration
This dissertation consists of two essays on corporate policy. The first chapter analyzes whether being labeled a “growth” firm or a “value” firm affects the firm’s dividend policy. I focus on the dividend policy because of its discretionary nature and the link to investor demand. To address endogeneity concerns, I use regression discontinuity design around the threshold to assign firms to each category. The results show that “value” firms have a significantly higher dividend payout - about four percentage points - than growth firms. This approach establishes a causal link between firm “growth/value” labels and dividend policy.
The second chapter develops investment policy model which associated with du- ration of cash flow. Firms are doing their business by operating a portfolio of projects that have various duration, and the duration of the project portfolio generates dif- ferent duration of cash flow stream. By assuming the duration of cash flow as a firm specific characteristic, this paper analyzes how the duration of cash flow affects firms’ investment decision. I develop a model of investment, external finance, and savings to characterize how firms’ decision is affected by the duration of cash flow. Firms maximize total value of cash flow, while they have to maintain their solvency by paying a fixed cost for the operation. I empirically confirm the positive correlation between duration of cash flow and investment with theoretical support. Financial constraint suffocates the firm when they face solvency issue, so that model with financial constraint shows that the correlation between duration of cash flow and investment is stronger than low financial constraint case.