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Firm Diversification and CEO Compensation: Managerial Ability or Executive Entrenchment?

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  • Nancy L. Rose
  • Andrea Shepard

Abstract

Investigating the relationship between CEO compensation and firm diversification over 1985-1990, we find that the CEO of a firm with two lines of business averages 13% more in salary and bonus than the CEO of a similar-sized but undiversified firm, ceteris paribus. We explore two potential explanations for this: the match of higher-ability CEOs with firms that are more difficult to manage, and the association of diversification with CEO entrenchment. The data are more consistent with ability matching: the premium is invariant to CEO tenure, and incumbents who diversify their firms earn less than newly hired CEOs at already-diversified firms.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by The RAND Corporation in its journal RAND Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 28 (1997)
Issue (Month): 3 (Autumn)
Pages: 489-514

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Handle: RePEc:rje:randje:v:28:y:1997:i:autumn:p:489-514

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  1. Lang, Larry H P & Stulz, Rene M, 1994. "Tobin's q, Corporate Diversification, and Firm Performance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(6), pages 1248-80, December.
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  3. Joskow, Paul L. & Rose, Nancy L. & Shepard, Andrea., 1993. "Regulatory constraints on executive compensation," Working papers 3550-93., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
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  8. Yakov Amihud & Baruch Lev, 1981. "Risk Reduction as a Managerial Motive for Conglomerate Mergers," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 12(2), pages 605-617, Autumn.
  9. Baker, G.P. & Jensen, M.C. & Murphy, K.J., 1988. "Compensation And Incentives: Practice Vs. Theory," Papers 88-05, Rochester, Business - Managerial Economics Research Center.
  10. John G. Matsusaka, 1993. "Takeover Motives during the Conglomerate Merger Wave," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 24(3), pages 357-379, Autumn.
  11. Cynthia A. Montgomery & Birger Wernerfelt, 1988. "Diversification, Ricardian Rents, and Tobin's q," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(4), pages 623-632, Winter.
  12. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1989. "Management entrenchment : The case of manager-specific investments," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 123-139, November.
  13. Lichtenberg, Frank R, 1991. "The Managerial Response to Regulation of Financial Reporting for Segments of a Business Enterprise," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 3(3), pages 241-49, September.
  14. Waldman, Michael, 1984. "Worker Allocation, Hierarchies and the Wage Distribution," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(1), pages 95-109, January.
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