Business - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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Do higher dividends lead to higher earnings growth?

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

Recent research has discovered that the market payout ratio is a good forecaster of future growth in market earnings. This runs counter to the thought that higher growth in earnings will naturally follow from higher, and astute, re-investment of earnings. This paper adds support to the extant research on this topic by testing for and finding a relationship between the payout ratio and future real growth in earnings for the TSX Composite. The strength of this relationship is robust to various tests; however, this paper also finds periods of time where the relationship does not hold.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

A strategic analysis of entry into the Chinese fuel oil futures

Author: 
Date created: 
2004
Abstract: 

Raffemet faces threats in the Chinese metal Futures market. Internet trading is leading to reductions in brokerage charges. Entry of international firms will challenge the company's competitive position. Senior management is seeking new business opportunities. Currently, oil Futures trading is an ideal product that the company should explore because of the continued increase in oil consumption and the launching of the fuel oil Futures market in Shanghai. This external and internal environment analysis evaluates the emerging trends and events, as well as strengths and weaknesses the company has. Conclusion: Raffemet should expand business to the oil Futures market. This solution builds on the huge potential of market growth and long-term profitability, while avoiding the problem associated with ever-tougher competition and the slowly growing metal Futures market. The strategy developed for the new business should provide both for stabilization in near-tern and allow for long-term growth and profitability.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Determinants of portfolio performance: CIBC Canadian balanced funds

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

It is widely believed that the asset allocation decision is one of the most important components in determining portfolio performance. This paper will attempt to provide a more in-depth discussion about asset allocation policy and evaluate whether passive asset allocation management can generate a better portfolio return compared to active asset allocation management over a 10-year time. Past research finds that an usset allocation policy does play a significant part in determining both return and risk in many portfolios. However, other components, such as market timing and security selection, can also contribute to the overall return under certain conditions. The purpose of paper is to revisit a study of this issue by Brinson, Hood and Beebower using a different data set. In this project, I analyze CIBC Canadian balanced funds over a 10-year period (January 1995 through December 2004).

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Family Ownership and firm Performance in Canada

Author: 
Date created: 
2004
Abstract: 

This paper analyzes the relationship between family firm ownership and the firm value, as measured by Tobin's q, and firm profitability, as measured by return on assets, for a sample of 251 Canadian firms. The results indicate that family firm ownership does not have an effect on the firm's value. The results also indicate that Canadian family firms are not more profitable that non-family owned firms. The results of this paper vary from those of similar U.S. family firms published by Anderson and Reeb (2003). Anderson and Reeb (2003) concluded that family firms are more profitable and are more valuable than non family firms in the U.S..

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

A strategic analysis of a systems engineering business unit

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

The Earth Observation Business Area of MacDonald Dettwiler is considering how to grow its revenues in accordance with the corporate parent's growth objectives. Demand for ground station systems is growing over the near-term to service increasing defence needs, particularly in the US. However, traditional customers are receiving less funding than in the past. Additionally, the US market is increasingly regulated. Competition and the collaborative agreements amongst suppliers continue to be stable, although recent years have seen some industry consolidation. EO's competitive advantage lies in project execution, data calibration and product generation technology and business development expertise. BA revenues have been flat over the last decade and have afforded few opportunities for staff development. Recommendations include the establishment of a US base to pursue US business leaving the Richmond operation to service the rest of the world. Additionally, addressing HR issues and reorganizing the corporate parent are recommended.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Analysis of Alcan Kitimat smelter's approach in maximizing values of the engineering services

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

Alcan's smelter in Kitimat is equipped with 50 year old technology and is therefore close to the end of its operating life. A major capital investment will be required sometime in the future, to extend operations at this location. Each year, approximately $100 million is spent on sustaining projects and maintenance to support smelter operations. Sustaining projects fall into two categories, one is the replacement or upgrading of existing equipment and the other is the addition of new equipment to meet changing environmental, health and safety regulations. Managing the projects generated by these sustaining expenditures is a challenge for the engineering department. With limited manpower resources, Alcan engineering has to rely on the services of engineering consulting f m s . Consulting engineering firms play a key role in managing these sustaining projects by providing manpower and expertise for all project phases. An isolated location further complicates the availability of support resources for all three major industries operating in Kitimat. Finding a satisfactory solution for both industry and consulting firms is a challenging task. For Alcan, a long term planning strategy cannot be hlly developed without consideration and promotion of a long-term business plan.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Industry analysis - Canadian medical doctoral universities

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

Most public sector and non-profit entities do not undergo standard business analysis that is typically found in their private sector counterparts, however such approaches may provide administrators with information to better understand their industry. A high-level industry analysis of Canadian medical-doctoral universities, based on Porter's five forces and value chain analysis, combined with an analysis of pertinent issues indicated that universities are greatly affected by strategic decisions imposed by government. Examples of these include movement towards a userpay environment and increased co-funding research relations with industry. Other influences outside of the control of universities, such as demographic impacts to customer base and human resources, also play a role. Through the use of similar analytic approaches, business administrators in universities can study the decisions and influences for future trends and their impacts and derive an understanding to augment their knowledge in order to compensate, prepare for and possibly eliminate negative impacts.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

Pivotal and the threat of open source CRM: A strategic assessment

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

The open source idea is gaining currency. In areas such as scripting languages, web server platforms, and database servers, open source software has managed to compete with and surpass commercial incumbents. Could the CRM industry be next? To answer this question, we introduce four open source case studies: Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP. Identifying commonalities between them, we suggest a framework for explaining the success of open source projects. Based on this framework, we evaluate the likelihood of open source CRM succeeding and pinpoint future developments that would trigger its widespread adoption. We conclude that open source CRM is likely to succeed and that its success will negatively impact commercial CRM vendors. In light of these conclusions, we propose recommendations that Pivotal Corporation - a commercial CRM incumbent - can pursue in order to better position itself in the industry's evolving competitive landscape.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

The January barometer: Fact or fiction?

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

The January Barometer is a theory that claims 'As goes January, so goes the year'. Proponents claim that if the stock market rises in January, the year will follow suit. Conversely, if the market falls in January it will end the year lower. This study uses linear regression analysis to determine if January has any greater predictive value of the following 12-month returns than the other eleven months. It tests two stock market indices over four different time periods. The results of the study provided little evidence to show that January, or any of the other months, can predict the direction or magnitude of stock market returns for the coming twelve months.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)

An analysis of Company X's proposed strategy for entering the m-learning industry

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

This is an analysis of an e-learning services company's proposed strategy for entering the m-learning industry. The company, referred to as Company X, is aiming to create generic courses that are deliverable via cellular phones. It plans to license these courses to telecommunications providers who will then make the courses available to corporate customers on a subscription basis. The analysis concludes that Company X should not pursue the proposed strategy. The m-learning industry is not yet commercially active, nor has a dominant design emerged. Company X has neither the financial nor the human resources necessary to develop commercially viable m-learning at this time. The combination of industry uncertainty and company instability renders the proposed strategy inappropriate. In order to meet its goals, the company should instead aim to be a holistic training solutions provider within its existing industry. This strategy would exploit the company's current strengths and leverage its reputation.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Faculty of Business Administration - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Research Project (M.B.A.)