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On REIT CEO Compensation: Does Board Structure Matter?

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  • Chinmoy Ghosh
  • C. Sirmans

Abstract

In a perfect world where the board of directors is independent of CEO influence, CEO pay-for-performance compensation contracts should be a function of performance only. If the CEO can influence board structure through his ownership of company stock or chairmanship of the board, however, performance contracts are sub-optimal and agency problems arise, which allow the CEO to extract rent and demand compensation in excess of the equilibrium level. As such, models of compensation contracts must include board and ownership structure variables, in addition to the traditional economic determinants. Our analyses with REITs corroborate this notion. Our data demonstrate that the structure of REIT boards are not independent of CEO influence, and significant agency problems exist allowing the CEO to design boards that reward him at the cost of shareholder wealth. CEO compensation in REITs depends significantly on the usual economic measures of performance including firm size and return on assets; more importantly, CEO compensation is higher in REITs where the board is weak in monitoring because of large size, and older directors; the effect of a blockholder is adverse, however. This study provides additional evidence to the growing literature that observed board structures are ineffective in monitoring and governance. Copyright Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

Suggested Citation

  • Chinmoy Ghosh & C. Sirmans, 2005. "On REIT CEO Compensation: Does Board Structure Matter?," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 30(4), pages 397-428, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jrefec:v:30:y:2005:i:4:p:397-428
    DOI: 10.1007/s11146-005-7014-6
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Han, Bing, 2004. "Insider Ownership and Corporate Value: Evidences from Real Estate Investment Trust," Working Paper Series 2004-1, Ohio State University, Charles A. Dice Center for Research in Financial Economics.
    2. Roberto Barontini & Stefano Bozzi, 2011. "Board compensation and ownership structure: empirical evidence for Italian listed companies," Journal of Management & Governance, Springer;Accademia Italiana di Economia Aziendale (AIDEA), vol. 15(1), pages 59-89, February.
    3. Gang-Zhi Fan & Zsuzsa R. Huszar & Weina Zhang, 2016. "The Helping Hand of the State in Chinese Real Estate Firms: Anti-corruption and Liberalization," International Real Estate Review, Asian Real Estate Society, vol. 19(1), pages 51-97.
    4. Hristos Doucouliagos & Janto Haman & Saeed Askary, 2007. "Directors' Remuneration and Performance in Australian Banking," Corporate Governance: An International Review, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(6), pages 1363-1383, November.
    5. Zhilan Feng & Chinmoy Ghosh & C. Sirmans, 2007. "Director Compensation and CEO Bargaining Power in REITs," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 35(3), pages 225-251, October.
    6. Cardinaels, Eddy, 2009. "Governance in non-for-profit hospitals: Effects of board members' remuneration and expertise on CEO compensation," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 93(1), pages 64-75, November.
    7. Erik Devos & Seow Ong & Andrew Spieler, 2007. "Analyst Activity and Firm Value: Evidence from the REIT Sector," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 35(3), pages 333-356, October.
    8. Zhilan Feng & Chinmoy Ghosh & C. Sirmans, 2007. "CEO Involvement in Director Selection: Implications for REIT Dividend Policy," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 35(4), pages 385-410, November.
    9. Piet Eichholtz & Nils Kok & Roger Otten, 2008. "Executive Compensation in UK Property Companies," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 36(4), pages 405-426, May.

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    Keywords

    CEO compensation; board structure; governance;

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