Stockholder Conflicts and Dividend Payout
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This paper examines how dividend policy influences conflicts of interest between majority and minority stockholders in a large sample of private firms with controlling blockholders. We find that a higher potential for stockholder conflicts is associated with higher payout. This tendency is stronger when the minority stockholder structure is diffuse and when the minority is not on the firm’s board. Minority-friendly payout is also associated with higher subsequent minority investment in the firm. These findings are consistent with the notion that dividend policy is used to mitigate agency costs, particularly when this benefits the majority in the longer run.