Matthias C. Grüninger

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Ausgewählte Publikationen

Corporate cash holdings: Evidence from Switzerland

Wolfgang Drobetz, Matthias C. Grüninger
Financial Markets and Portfolio Management | 09/2007
This paper investigates the determinants of cash holdings for a comprehensive sample of Swiss non-financial firms between 1995 and 2004. The median Swiss firm holds almost twice as much cash and cash equivalents as the median US or UK firm. Our results indicate that asset tangibility and firm size are both negatively related to corporate cash holdings, and that there is a non-linear relationship between the leverage ratio and liquidity. Dividend payments and operating cash flows are positively related to cash reserves, but we cannot detect a significant relationship between growth opportunities and cash holdings. Most of these empirical findings, but not all of them, can be explained by the transaction costs motive and/or the precautionary motive. Analyzing the corporate governance structures of Swiss firms, we document a non-linear relationship between managerial ownership and cash holdings, indicating an incentive alignment effect and an opposing effect related to increasing risk aversion. Finally, our results suggest that firms in which the CEO simultaneously serves as the COB hold significantly more cash.

Information asymmetry and financing decisions

Wolfgang Bessler, Wolfgang Drobetz, Matthias C. Grüninger
International Review of Finance | 03/2011
This study conducts tests of the pecking order theory using an international sample with more than 6000 firms over the period from 1995 to 2005. The high correlation between net equity issuances and the financing deficit discredits the static pecking order theory. Rather than analyzing the predictions of the theory, we test its core assumption that information asymmetry is an important determinant of capital structure decisions. Our empirical results support the dynamic pecking order theory and its two testable implications. First, the probability of issuing equity increases with less pronounced firm‐level information asymmetry. Second, firms exploit windows of opportunity by making relatively larger equity issuances and build up cash reserves (slack) after declines in firm‐level information asymmetry. Firms from common law countries use parts of their proceeds from an equity issuance to redeem debt and to rebalance their capital structure. These findings are consistent with a time‐varying adverse selection explanation of firms' financing decisions.

Information asymmetry and the value of cash

Wolfgang Drobetz, Matthias C. Grüninger, Simone Hirschvogl
Journal of Banking and Finance | 09/2010
This study investigates the market value of corporate cash holdings in connection with firm-specific and time-varying information asymmetry. Analyzing a large international sample, we test two opposing hypotheses. According to the pecking order theory, adverse selection problems make external financing costly and imply a higher market value of a marginal dollar of cash in states with higher information asymmetry. In contrast, the free cash flow theory predicts that excessive cash holdings bundled with higher information asymmetry generate moral hazard problems and lead to a lower market value of a marginal dollar of cash. We use the dispersion of analysts’ earnings per share forecasts as our main measure of firm-specific and time-varying information asymmetry. Extending the valuation regressions of Fama and French [Fama, E.F., French, K.R., 1998. Taxes, financing decisions, and firm value. Journal of Finance 53, 819–843], our results support the free cash flow theory and indicate that the value of corporate cash holdings is lower in states with a higher degree of information asymmetry.