PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to investigate whether family firms (FFs) differ from non-family firms (NFFs) in their propensity and likelihood of repurchasing shares. It focuses on the effects of voting control and managerial control of family members and economic conditions on repurchasing activity.Design/methodology/approachThis paper employs pooled Tobit and probit models for a sample of 982 US firms for the period 2006 through 2015 and separates the roles of voting control and managerial control on influencing share repurchase decisions.FindingsThis paper provides evidence that FFs have a decreased propensity to repurchase shares relative to NFFs over the sample period. In general, the decreased propensity to repurchase shares is driven by the decision whether to repurchase shares and not the percentage of outstanding market value of equity repurchased.Practical implicationsFor critics of share repurchases, this paper provides support for existing literature that FFs provide good long-term stewardship to their firms. In general, it demonstrates that FFs are less likely to repurchase shares than NFFs. Investors that have a preference for or against repurchases can use this information to improve their security selection process.Originality/valueTo date, the effects of family voting and managerial control on share repurchases in the USA has not been considered in the finance literature. This paper adds to the literature by providing evidence that family influence generally results in a lower propensity to repurchase shares.
Managerial Finance – Emerald Publishing
Published: Aug 12, 2019
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