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Does Delaware Incorporation Affect Executive Compensation? An Empirical Analysis

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  • Jiraporn, Pornsit
  • Kittiakarasakun, Jullavut
  • Chintrakarn, Pandej

Abstract

Motivated by agency theory, this study attempts to ascertain whether chief executive compensation is influenced by legal rules. In particular, we analyze whether Delaware law has an impact on CEO pay. Legal rules have been argued to impact agency conflicts. Agency costs, in turn, affect CEO compensation. Thus, we contend that Delaware law influences CEO pay through their associations with agency problems. The empirical evidence corroborates this hypothesis, showing that Delaware firms pay their CEOs significantly more generously than do non-Delaware firms (about 36% higher in total compensation). Furthermore, Delaware firms exhibit significantly lower pay-performance sensitivity (almost 50% lower), implying that the higher pay more likely reflects rent expropriation rather than shareholder wealth maximization.

Suggested Citation

  • Jiraporn, Pornsit & Kittiakarasakun, Jullavut & Chintrakarn, Pandej, 2012. "Does Delaware Incorporation Affect Executive Compensation? An Empirical Analysis," Review of Applied Economics, Review of Applied Economics, vol. 8(1).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:reapec:143461
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Crawford, Anthony J & Ezzell, John R & Miles, James A, 1995. "Bank CEO Pay-Performance Relations and the Effects of Deregulation," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 68(2), pages 231-256, April.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    CEO compensation; Delaware law; Delaware incorporation; Financial Economics; Industrial Organization; Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies; G34; G38;

    JEL classification:

    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
    • G38 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Government Policy and Regulation

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