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Incentive Contracts and Hedge Fund Management

  • Hodder, James E.
  • Jackwerth, Jens Carsten

We investigate incentive effects of a typical hedge fund contract for a manager with power utility. With a one-year horizon, the manager displays risk taking that varies dramatically with fund value. We extend the model to multiple yearly evaluation periods and find that the manager's risk taking is rapidly moderated if the fund performs reasonably well. The most realistic approach to modeling fund closure uses an endogenous shutdown barrier where the manager optimally chooses to shut down. The manager increases risk taking as fund value approaches that barrier, and this boundary behavior persists strongly with multiyear horizons.

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Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis.

Volume (Year): 42 (2007)
Issue (Month): 04 (December)
Pages: 811-826

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Handle: RePEc:cup:jfinqa:v:42:y:2007:i:04:p:811-826_00
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  1. Chevalier, Judith & Ellison, Glenn, 1997. "Risk Taking by Mutual Funds as a Response to Incentives," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(6), pages 1167-1200, December.
  2. William N. Goetzmann & Jonathan E. Ingersoll Jr. & Stephen A. Ross, 2001. "High-Water Marks and Hedge Fund Management Contracts," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm186, Yale School of Management.
  3. Merton, Robert C, 1974. "On the Pricing of Corporate Debt: The Risk Structure of Interest Rates," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 29(2), pages 449-70, May.
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  7. Stephen J. Brown, 2001. "Careers and Survival: Competition and Risk in the Hedge Fund and CTA Industry," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(5), pages 1869-1886, October.
  8. Lucian Arye Bebchuk & Jesse M. Fried, 2003. "Executive Compensation as an Agency Problem," NBER Working Papers 9813, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Fung, William & Hsieh, David A., 1999. "A primer on hedge funds," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 309-331, September.
  10. Suleyman Basak & Alex Shapiro & Lucie Teplá, 2006. "Risk Management with Benchmarking," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(4), pages 542-557, April.
  11. Stavros Panageas & Mark M. Westerfield, 2009. "High-Water Marks: High Risk Appetites? Convex Compensation, Long Horizons, and Portfolio Choice," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 64(1), pages 1-36, 02.
  12. Jennifer Carpenter, 1999. "Does Option Compensation Increase Managerial Risk Appetite?," New York University, Leonard N. Stern School Finance Department Working Paper Seires 99-076, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business-.
  13. Basak, Suleyman & Pavlova, Anna & Shapiro, Alex, 2005. "Offsetting the Incentives: Risk Shifting and Benefits of Benchmarking in Money Management," CEPR Discussion Papers 5006, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  16. Bebchuk, Lucian A. & Fried, Jesse M., 2003. "Executive Compensation as an Agency Problem," Berkeley Olin Program in Law & Economics, Working Paper Series qt81q3136r, Berkeley Olin Program in Law & Economics.
  17. Merton, Robert C, 1969. "Lifetime Portfolio Selection under Uncertainty: The Continuous-Time Case," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 51(3), pages 247-57, August.
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