Is Japan Really a Buy? The Corporate Governance, Cash Holdings, and Economic Performance of Japanese Companies

ABSTRACT: Over the past ten years there has been much discussion about whether corporate governance in Japan has improved and, if so, whether this has translated into improved corporate performance.
We investigate whether observed changes in Japanese firms’ cash holdings and payout policy are consistent with improved governance practices.

To do this, we benchmark Japanese firms against U.S. firms. We find mixed evidence on whether Japanese governance has improved