NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Michael R. Roberts

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Working Papers

February 2014A Century of Capital Structure: The Leveraging of Corporate America
with John Graham, Mark T. Leary: w19910
Unregulated U.S. corporations dramatically increased their debt usage over the past century. Aggregate leverage – low and stable before 1945 – more than tripled between 1945 and 1970 from 11% to 35%, eventually reaching 47% by the early 1990s. The median firm in 1946 had no debt, but by 1970 had a leverage ratio of 31%. This increase occurred in all unregulated industries and affected firms of all sizes. Changing firm characteristics are unable to account for this increase. Rather, changes in government borrowing, macroeconomic uncertainty, and financial sector development play a more prominent role. Despite this increase among unregulated firms, a combination of stable debt usage among regulated firms and a decrease in the fraction of aggregate assets held by regulated firms over this per...

Forthcoming: A Century of Capital Structure: The Leveraging of Corporate America, John R. Graham, Mark T. Leary, Michael R. Roberts. in Understanding the Capital Structures of Non-Financial and Financial Corporations, Acharya, Almeida, and Baker. 2014

July 2004On the Importance of Measuring Payout Yield: Implications for Empirical Asset Pricing
with Jacob Boudoukh, Roni Michaely, Matthew Richardson: w10651
Previous research showed that the dividend price ratio process changed remarkably during the 1980's and 1990's, but that the total payout ratio (dividends plus repurchases over price) changed very little. We investigate implications of this difference for asset pricing models. In particular, the widely documented decline in the predictive power of dividends for excess stock returns in time series regressions in recent data is vastly overstated. Statistically and economically significant predictability is found at both short and long horizons when total payout yield is used instead of dividend yield. We also provide evidence that total payout yield has information in the cross-section for expected stock returns exceeding that of dividend yield and that the high minus low payout yield portfo...

Published: Jacob Boudoukh & Roni Michaely & Matthew Richardson & Michael R. Roberts, 2007. "On the Importance of Measuring Payout Yield: Implications for Empirical Asset Pricing," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(2), pages 877-915, 04. citation courtesy of

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers onlyInformation about this author at RePEc

 
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