Incentives from stock option grants: a behavioral approach
Purpose – This paper aims to analyze the valuation of stock options from the perspective of an employee exhibiting preferences as described by cumulative prospect theory (CPT). In addition, it elaborates on their incentives effect and some implications in terms of design aspects. Design/methodology/approach – The paper draws on the CPT framework to derive a continuous time model of the stock option subjective value using the certainty equivalence principle. Numerical simulations are used in order to analyze the subjective value sensitivity with respect to preferences-related parameters and to investigate the incentives effect. Findings – Consistent with a growing body of empirical and experimental studies, the model predicts that the employee may overestimate the value of his options in-excess of their risk-neutral value. Moreover, for typical setting of preferences parameters around the experimental estimates, and assuming the company is allowed to adjust existing compensation when making new stock option grants, the model predicts that incentives are maximized for strike prices set around the stock price at inception. This finding is consistent with companies’ actual compensation practices. Finally, the model predicts that an executive who is subject to probability weighting may be more prompted than a risk-neutral executive to act in order to increase the firm's assets volatility. Originality/value – This research proposes an alternative theoretical framework for the analysis of pay-to-performance sensitivity of equity-based compensation that takes into account a number of prominent patterns of employee behavior that expected utility theory cannot explain. It contributes to recent empirical and theoretical researches that have advanced CPT framework as a promising candidate for the analysis of equity-based compensation contracts.
Volume (Year): 10 (2011)
Issue (Month): 3 (August)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.emeraldinsight.com|
|Order Information:|| Postal: Emerald Group Publishing, Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley, BD16 1WA, UK|
Web: http://emeraldgrouppublishing.com/products/journals/journals.htm?id=raf Email:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Bruno Jullien & Bernard Salanié, 1997.
"Estimating Preferences under Risk : The Case of Racetrack Bettors,"
97-39, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
- Bruno Jullien & Bernard Salanie, 2000. "Estimating Preferences under Risk: The Case of Racetrack Bettors," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(3), pages 503-530, June.
- Rajgopal, Shivaram & Shevlin, Terry, 2002. "Empirical evidence on the relation between stock option compensation and risk taking," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 145-171, June.
- Ingolf Dittmann & Ernst Maug, 2007. "Lower Salaries and No Options? On the Optimal Structure of Executive Pay," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(1), pages 303-343, 02.
- Mohammed Abdellaoui, 2000. "Parameter-Free Elicitation of Utility and Probability Weighting Functions," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(11), pages 1497-1512, November.
- Huddart, Steven & Lang, Mark, 1996. "Employee stock option exercises an empirical analysis," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 5-43, February.
- David Yermack, 1996.
"Good Timing: CEO Stock Option Awards and Company News Announcements,"
New York University, Leonard N. Stern School Finance Department Working Paper Seires
96-41, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business-.
- Yermack, David, 1997. " Good Timing: CEO Stock Option Awards and Company News Announcements," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(2), pages 449-76, June.
- Chip Heath & Steven Huddart & Mark Lang, 1999. "Psychological Factors And Stock Option Exercise," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(2), pages 601-627, May.
- Jensen, Michael C & Murphy, Kevin J, 1990.
"Performance Pay and Top-Management Incentives,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(2), pages 225-64, April.
- Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979.
"Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk,"
Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-91, March.
- Amos Tversky & Daniel Kahneman, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7656, David K. Levine.
- George Wu & Richard Gonzalez, 1996. "Curvature of the Probability Weighting Function," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 42(12), pages 1676-1690, December.
- Brian J. Hall & Kevin J. Murphy, 2000.
"Stock Options for Undiversified Executives,"
NBER Working Papers
8052, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Terrance Odean, 1998. "Are Investors Reluctant to Realize Their Losses?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(5), pages 1775-1798, October.
- Holmstrom, Bengt & Milgrom, Paul, 1987.
"Aggregation and Linearity in the Provision of Intertemporal Incentives,"
Econometric Society, vol. 55(2), pages 303-28, March.
- Bengt Holmstrom & Paul R. Milgrom, 1985. "Aggregation and Linearity in the Provision of Intertemporal Incentives," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 742, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Hamza Bahaji, 2009. "Contribution à l'analyse des déterminants du comportement d'exercice des porteurs de stock options : une étude empirique sur le marché Américain," Working Papers halshs-00512840, HAL.
- Thaler, Richard H & Ziemba, William T, 1988. "Parimutuel Betting Markets: Racetracks and Lotteries," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 161-74, Spring.
- Philip J. Cook & Charles T. Clotfelter, 1991.
"The Peculiar Scale Economies of Lotto,"
NBER Working Papers
3766, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Kevin J. Murphy & Brian J. Hall, 2000.
"Optimal Exercise Prices for Executive Stock Options,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 90(2), pages 209-214, May.
- Brian J. Hall & Kevin J. Murphy, 2000. "Optimal Exercise Prices for Executive Stock Options," NBER Working Papers 7548, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1992. " Advances in Prospect Theory: Cumulative Representation of Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 297-323, October.
- DeFusco, Richard A & Johnson, Robert R & Zorn, Thomas S, 1990. " The Effect of Executive Stock Option Plans on Stockholders and Bondholders," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 45(2), pages 617-27, June.
- Camerer, Colin F & Ho, Teck-Hua, 1994. "Violations of the Betweenness Axiom and Nonlinearity in Probability," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 8(2), pages 167-96, March.
- Loughran, Tim & Ritter, Jay R, 1995. " The New Issues Puzzle," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(1), pages 23-51, March.
- Detemple, Jerome & Sundaresan, Suresh, 1999. "Nontraded Asset Valuation with Portfolio Constraints: A Binomial Approach," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 12(4), pages 835-72.
- Han Bleichrodt & Jose Luis Pinto, 2000. "A Parameter-Free Elicitation of the Probability Weighting Function in Medical Decision Analysis," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(11), pages 1485-1496, November.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eme:rafpps:v:10:y:2011:i:3:p:200-227. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Louise Lister)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.