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Corporate Governance and Executive Pay: Evidence from a Recent Reform

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  • Teodora Paligorova

Abstract

I examine the effect of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (SOX) on the structure of executive pay. Specifically, I consider the increased board oversight implied by SOX, which is expected to weaken the pay-for-performance link under traditional agency models. Alternatively, if entrenched CEOs managed to capture the pay process before SOX, stronger boards are expected to reduce CEO pay for luck and strengthen pay for performance. Using ExecuComp data, I find that the pay-for-performance link increases after 2002, while pay for luck decreases only in firms with weaker board oversight prior to 2002, that is, in firms more affected by SOX stipulations. In contrast, the pay-for-performance link changes little in firms with independent boards.

Suggested Citation

  • Teodora Paligorova, 2007. "Corporate Governance and Executive Pay: Evidence from a Recent Reform," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp331, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
  • Handle: RePEc:cer:papers:wp331
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Andres Almazan & Javier Suarez, 2003. "Entrenchment and Severance Pay in Optimal Governance Structures," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(2), pages 519-548, April.
    2. Lucian Bebchuk, 2005. "The Growth of Executive Pay," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(2), pages 283-303, Summer.
    3. Sendhil Mullainathan & Marianne Bertrand, 1998. "Executive Compensation and Incentives: The Impact of Takeover Legislation," Working papers 98-20, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    4. 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 225-264, April.
    5. Hallock, Kevin F., 1997. "Reciprocally Interlocking Boards of Directors and Executive Compensation," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 32(03), pages 331-344, September.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Corporate governance; The Sarbanes-Oxley Act; incentive pay.;

    JEL classification:

    • G38 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - 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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