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Post-recession share repurchase behaviour by JSE-listed companies: transparent or not?

Post-recession share repurchase behaviour by JSE-listed companies: transparent or not? Share repurchases are increasingly employed in South Africa. Disclosure on share repurchases in annual reports is poor, and a high percentage of share repurchases are not announced in real time on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE). A comprehensive database of share repurchases by JSE-listed companies has been created up to 2009, but post-recession repurchase behaviour is not known. This study aims to examine South African share repurchase behaviour (activity, repurchase entity, repurchase type and transparency) in the post-recession period and compare this to the 2000–2009 period.Design/methodology/approachComprehensive share repurchase data for all JSE-listed companies (excluding those in the basic materials and financial industries) were obtained by scrutinising annual reports and JSE announcements.FindingsThe repurchasing of shares reached a peak during the financial recession of 2008/2009, with share repurchases stabilising at a lower level post-recession. Repurchases executed by subsidiaries have decreased post-recession, probably owing to the introduction of dividends tax. However, 45% of the share repurchase value was not announced via the JSE (compared to 22% in 2000–2009).Practical implicationsReal-time JSE announcements of all share repurchases are required to improve transparency.Originality/valueOwing to low announcement rates, a lack of transparency relating to share repurchases was observed in South Africa post-recession. Enhanced corporate governance requirements could improve transparency. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Accounting in Emerging Economies Emerald Publishing

Post-recession share repurchase behaviour by JSE-listed companies: transparent or not?

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
2042-1168
DOI
10.1108/jaee-02-2020-0040
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Share repurchases are increasingly employed in South Africa. Disclosure on share repurchases in annual reports is poor, and a high percentage of share repurchases are not announced in real time on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE). A comprehensive database of share repurchases by JSE-listed companies has been created up to 2009, but post-recession repurchase behaviour is not known. This study aims to examine South African share repurchase behaviour (activity, repurchase entity, repurchase type and transparency) in the post-recession period and compare this to the 2000–2009 period.Design/methodology/approachComprehensive share repurchase data for all JSE-listed companies (excluding those in the basic materials and financial industries) were obtained by scrutinising annual reports and JSE announcements.FindingsThe repurchasing of shares reached a peak during the financial recession of 2008/2009, with share repurchases stabilising at a lower level post-recession. Repurchases executed by subsidiaries have decreased post-recession, probably owing to the introduction of dividends tax. However, 45% of the share repurchase value was not announced via the JSE (compared to 22% in 2000–2009).Practical implicationsReal-time JSE announcements of all share repurchases are required to improve transparency.Originality/valueOwing to low announcement rates, a lack of transparency relating to share repurchases was observed in South Africa post-recession. Enhanced corporate governance requirements could improve transparency.

Journal

Journal of Accounting in Emerging EconomiesEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 17, 2020

Keywords: Share repurchases; JSE; Post-recession behaviour; Transparency; Dividends tax; Repurchase entity; Repurchase type

References