Why do Sens. Chuck Schumer and Bernie Sanders — with their ill-informed proposal to limit stock buybacks and dividend payouts — think they can get involved in relations between company directors and shareholders?

I wonder if these two elder statesmen are trying to pander to the young and the naïve, like House member Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

While I do not think all companies should buy back stock or pay dividends, I do believe that this is a corporate conversation, not to be decided by the government.

There are unintended consequences that the two senators do not take into account.

Should a buyback ban ever come to be, it would set off a merger & acquisition boom the likes of which we have never seen before.

Company directors have a fiduciary responsibility to shareholders to maximize profit. If they can’t give shareholders a price bump on buybacks, they will deploy that capital in M&A.

Consolidation takes away choice and perhaps price competition. It could also lead to layoffs of good middle-class jobs, since the new entities do not need two accounts receivable or marketing departments.

Washington should butt out of how corporations deploy capital.

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