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The Impact of Legal Systems on Dividend Payments


This paper focuses on the amount of dividends paid to shareholders by companies in different countries and examines whether being in a country where the legal system offers weak shareholder protection affects dividend payments distributed to shareholders. The sample used for this study comprises 8,045 companies from 46 countries. Seven individual factors affecting shareholder protection were examined. Out of the seven factors, only two of them provide a significant relationship with dividend payments, and more specifically, the mechanisms put in place by companies to protect oppressed minority shareholders as well as minimum percentage share of capital in order for the shareholders to be eligible to call an extraordinary shareholder meeting.