Leverage and growth: effect of stock options
AbstractThis paper investigates the potential effects of stock options on managers’ investment decisions and therefore on a firm’s growth or, alternatively, on its leverage-growth relationship. To structure the analysis addressing this issue, the paper utilizes a framework establishing a negative relationship between leverage and the firm’s growth. However, in contrast to some of the existing results, the empirical analysis of manufacturing firms in this paper shows that the negative relationship between leverage and growth has changed significantly. Primarily this paper documents that, as options based compensation in manager’s portfolio increases, the negative effect of leverage on growth disappears. The paper argues that this is an important finding, because it implies that when managers are compensated with options debt ceases to pre-commit managers. On addressing the potential endogeneity problem between leverage, growth and compensation the paper finds that option delta instead of book leverage negatively affects growth, and that book leverage and option delta are inversely related. Finally, the paper also examines the effect of corporate governance on the relationship between leverage, incentives and the firm’s growth and finds that leverage is negatively related to growth only in poorly governed firms.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Bank of Finland in its series Research Discussion Papers with number 19/2011.
Length: 58 pages
Date of creation: 05 Oct 2011
Date of revision:
leverage; stock options; compensation schemes; corporate governance;
Other versions of this item:
- C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
- G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill
- G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
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