Moutai Phenomenon and the Theory of Capital Structure
本文是一个案例研究，以茅台股份为例，讨论那些盈利能力突出、现 金充裕，但负债率极低的企业，可能的理论解释是什么。茅台股份自2001年上市以来未曾借款，持有现金占总资产近5000，盈利能力突出。与之相似的是低负债、高利润、高现金的企业，这类企业在我国上市公司中并不罕见。我们的讨论表明，主流的资本结构决定理论，如权衡理论、优序融资理论、代理理论等难以解释这一现象。本文尝试提出，激励与风险不对称导致管理层“不求有功、但求无过”，进而产生“无为”和极度保守的财务政策，形成了“茅台现象”。Since it went IPO in 2001, Moutai has been very profitable and has not carriEd any bank loans or interest-bearing liabilities on its balance sheet. In addition, cash and cash equivalents account for almost 50% of Moutai's total assets. We call Moutai's capital structure (no interest-bearing liabilities with high-profitability and excessive cash holding) the Moutai phenomenon. Traditional capital structure theories such as the trade-off theory, the pecking-order theory, and the agency theory cannot explain the Moutai phenomenon. We use Moutai's capital structure as a case to explore the potential theory for the Moutai phenomenon. We argue that the Moutai phenomenon can be attributed to the compensation policy of bureaucrats, which is asymmetric and provides reverse incentives for risk taking, i.e., rewarding low risk taking but punishing high risk taking.