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Executive Compensation and Macroeconomic Fluctuations

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Author Info

  • Oxelheim, Lars

    (Lund University and Research Institute of Industrial Economics)

  • Wihlborg, Clas

    (Chapman University and Copenhagen Business School)

  • Zhang, Jianhua

    ()
    (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)

Abstract

Macroeconomic fluctuations affect corporations’ performance through demand and cost conditions. Incentive effects of performance-based compensation schemes for management may be weakened or biased by macroeconomic influences if management is unable to forecast macroeconomic fluctuations or unable to adjust operations in response to changes in macroeconomic conditions. In this paper we analyze the impact of macroeconomic, industry and firm-specific factors on salaries and bonus of CEOs in 131 Swedish corporations during the period 2001-2006. A distinction is made between anticipated and unanticipated macroeconomic fluctuations. The macroeconomic influences on performance and compensation can be expected to vary from firm to firm in terms of magnitude of effects, as well as in terms of relevant macroeconomic variables. The estimates obtained in this paper refer to the average impact across the sample of firms. We find that the average Swedish CEOs’ compensation is explained to a substantial extent by macroeconomic factors; less so by unanticipated factors alone.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2077/9995
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers in Economics with number 301.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: 21 Apr 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0301

Note: Forthcoming in Oxelheim, L. and C. Wihlborg (2008), Markets and Compensation for Executives in Europe, Emerald Publishing, Oxford.
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg, Box 640, SE 405 30 GÖTEBORG, Sweden
Phone: 031-773 10 00
Web page: http://www.handels.gu.se/econ/
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Keywords: executive compensation; macroeconomic factors; cash compensation;

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  1. John M. Abowd, 1990. "Does performance-based managerial compensation affect corporate performance?," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 43(3), pages 52-73, February.
  2. Kevin J. Murphy, 1986. "Incentives, Learning, and Compensation: A Theoretical and Empirical Investigation of Managerial Labor Contracts," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 17(1), pages 59-76, Spring.
  3. Jonathan S. Leonard, 1990. "Executive pay and firm performance," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 43(3), pages 13-29, February.
  4. Murphy, Kevin J., 1985. "Corporate performance and managerial remuneration : An empirical analysis," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(1-3), pages 11-42, April.
  5. Robert Gibbons & Kevin Murphy, 1989. "Relative Performance Evaluation for Chief Executive Officers," Working Papers 628, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  6. Oxelheim, Lars & Wihlborg, Clas, 2002. "Recognizing Macroeconomic Fluctuations in Value Based Management," Working Paper Series 574, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  7. Lucian Bebchuk, 2005. "The Growth of Executive Pay," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(2), pages 283-303, Summer.
  8. Smith, Clifford W. & Stulz, René M., 1985. "The Determinants of Firms' Hedging Policies," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 20(04), pages 391-405, December.
  9. Ciscel, David H & Carroll, Thomas M, 1980. "The Determinants of Executive Salaries: An Econometric Survey," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 62(1), pages 7-13, February.
  10. Mehran, Hamid, 1995. "Executive compensation structure, ownership, and firm performance," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 163-184, June.
  11. Coughlan, Anne T. & Schmidt, Ronald M., 1985. "Executive compensation, management turnover, and firm performance : An empirical investigation," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(1-3), pages 43-66, April.
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