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Bank Bonuses and Bailouts

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  • HENDRIK HAKENES
  • ISABEL SCHNABEL

Abstract

This paper shows that bonus contracts may arise endogenously as a response to agency problems within banks, and analyzes how compensation schemes change in reaction to anticipated bailouts. If there is a risk‐shifting problem, bailout expectations lead to steeper bonus schemes and even more risk taking. If there is an effort problem, the compensation scheme becomes flatter and effort decreases. If both types of agency problems are present, a sufficiently large increase in bailout perceptions makes it optimal for a welfare‐maximizing regulator to impose caps on bank bonuses. In contrast, raising managers' liability can be counterproductive.

Suggested Citation

  • Hendrik Hakenes & Isabel Schnabel, 2014. "Bank Bonuses and Bailouts," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 46(s1), pages 259-288, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:jmoncb:v:46:y:2014:i:s1:p:259-288
    DOI: 10.1111/jmcb.12090
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods
    • M52 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Compensation and Compensation Methods and Their Effects

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