Stock Options and Chief Executive Compensation
AbstractAlthough stock options are commonly observed in chief executive officer (CEO) com- pensation contracts, there is theoretical controversy about whether stock options are part of the optimal contract. Using a sample of Fortune 500 companies, we solve an agency model calibrated to the company-specifc data and we find that stock options are almost always part of the optimal contract. This result is robust to alternative assumptions about the level of CEO risk-aversion and the disutility associated with their effort. In a supplementary analysis, we solve for the optimal contract when there are no restrictions on the contract space. We find that the optimal contract (which is characterized as a state-contingent payoff to the CEO) typically has option-like features over the most probable range of outcomes.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science in its series Discussion Papers with number 1447.
Date of creation: May 2007
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Postal: Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science, Northwestern University, 580 Jacobs Center, 2001 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208-2014
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- C61 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Optimization Techniques; Programming Models; Dynamic Analysis
- D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
- D86 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Economics of Contract Law
- J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods
- J41 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Labor Contracts
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