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Apr 03, 2023

“How does dividend policy affect corporate earnings and profitability?”
You are required:

Assignment Task : 7FNCE020W Contemporary Finance Course-work Assignment

(1) To critically study the topic based on a comprehensive literature review; the papers “Liu and Chen (2015) Do Firms Use Dividend Changes to Signal Future Profitability? A Simultaneous Equation Analysis. International Review of Financial Analysis 37, page 194-207” and “Nissim and Ziv (2001) Dividend Changes and Future Profitability. Journal of Finance 56 (6), page 2111-2133” must be included (theoretical part).

(2) To create an empirical case study to study the topic and to compare your findings with your literature review; the chosen company for the case study must be listed under either FTSE350 or S&P500 (empirical part).

• Every student must submit an individual essay 2,500 words (+/-10%). The assignment needs to include a theoretical part (50% of the assignment) and an empirical part (50% of the assignment).

• The data for the empirical part should be obtained from reliable sources, such as books, company reports, public records, newspapers, periodicals, financial-data systems (e.g. Data-stream, Bloomberg etc.).

The practical aspect of this assignment is intended to underpin the theory clearly showing the relevance of the latter and any aspects of application thereof. Each student will be required to submit their work to the Turnitin link in Blackboard.

• The work you hand in must be your own original work. All sources must be properly referenced (including internet sites). Please check the University of Westminster’s regulations on plagiarism and collusion.

• Submissions of completed assignments must be uploaded to blackboard by the relevant time indicated above. University guidelines will apply to assignments handed in after this deadline.

• Anonymous marking: Do NOT include your name or student ID within the file name or anywhere within your submission. The submission will be subject to anonymous marking. Having logged into Turnitin on Blackboard, the system will record your details anonymously and tutors will only see your name after the entire submission has been assessed and provisional marks have been released to all students at the same time.

• Feedback will then be available on Blackboard and/or by email
Quality Considerations

• Each assignment must be word-processed, have a well-developed structure, and care must be taken to cite pertinent references for definitions, quotations, tables, arguments, ideas, figures etc.

• Specific sources mentioned within the main body of the assignment must appear in reference, where full details of the source must be given according the Harvard

referencing style:

• In the case of company-related information and other documentary data, copies of the relevant pages of annual reports or financial-information sheets should be attached in an appendix at the back of the assignment.

• Assessment and marking of each assignment will take into consideration the extent of theoretical coverage of the topic chosen, soundness of theories/concepts covered, adherence to appropriate standards of academic research, in addition to the coherence of structure, quality of presentation, and critique provided.

Mark Allocation

• Theoretical discussion 40%
o Introduction 5%
o Inclusion of at least three additional, relevant academic papers 5%
o Literature review 20%
o Critical discussion of papers referenced 10%

• Empirical study 40%
o Choice and description of company for case study 5%
o Data analysis, with inclusion of tables and figures 10%
o Application of concepts/theories/formulae from module 10%
o Critical discussion of case study findings, with links to previous research
papers 15%

• Structure, writing style and referencing 20%
o Structure 8%
o Writing Style 8%
o References 4%

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