IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/chf/rpseri/rp1455.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Incentive Pay and Bank Risk-Taking: Evidence from Austrian, German, and Swiss Banks

Author

Listed:
  • Matthias EFING

    (University of Geneva and Swiss Finance Institute)

  • Harald HAU

    (University of Geneva and Swiss Finance Institute)

  • Patrick KAMPKÖTTER

    (University of Cologne)

  • Johannes STEINBRECHER

    (Ifo Institute Branch Dresden)

Abstract

We use payroll data in the Austrian, German, and Swiss banking sector to identify incentive pay in the critical banking segments of treasury/capital market management and investment banking for 67 banks. We document an economically signifi?cant correlation of incentive pay with both the level and volatility of bank trading income?--particularly for the pre-crisis period 2003?-7, in which incentive pay was strongest. This result is robust if we instrument the bonus share in the capital markets divisions with the strength of incentive pay in unrelated bank divisions like retail banking. Moreover, pre-crisis incentive pay appears too strong for an optimal trade-off between trading income and risk, which maximizes the net present value of trading income. Further analyses indicate that the bonus moderation during the crisis has removed excessive pre-crisis incentive pay.

Suggested Citation

  • Matthias EFING & Harald HAU & Patrick KAMPKÖTTER & Johannes STEINBRECHER, 2014. "Incentive Pay and Bank Risk-Taking: Evidence from Austrian, German, and Swiss Banks," Swiss Finance Institute Research Paper Series 14-55, Swiss Finance Institute, revised Dec 2014.
  • Handle: RePEc:chf:rpseri:rp1455
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2492115
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Agarwal, Sumit & Ben-David, Itzhak, 2018. "Loan prospecting and the loss of soft information," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 129(3), pages 608-628.
    2. Bhagat, Sanjai & Bolton, Brian, 2014. "Financial crisis and bank executive incentive compensation," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(C), pages 313-341.
    3. Joseph Chen & Harrison Hong & Ming Huang & Jeffrey D. Kubik, 2004. "Does Fund Size Erode Mutual Fund Performance? The Role of Liquidity and Organization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(5), pages 1276-1302, December.
    4. Gill, David & Prowse, Victoria & Vlassopoulos, Michael, 2013. "Cheating in the workplace: An experimental study of the impact of bonuses and productivity," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 96(C), pages 120-134.
    5. Bogaard, Hein & Svejnar, Jan, 2018. "Incentive pay and performance: Insider econometrics in a multi-unit firm," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 100-115.
    6. Xavier Gabaix & Augustin Landier, 2008. "Why has CEO Pay Increased So Much?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(1), pages 49-100.
    7. Patrick Bolton & Hamid Mehran & Joel Shapiro, 2015. "Executive Compensation and Risk Taking," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 19(6), pages 2139-2181.
    8. Agarwal, Vikas & Daniel, Naveen D. & Naik, Narayan Y., 2009. "Role of managerial incentives and discretion in hedge fund performance," CFR Working Papers 04-04, University of Cologne, Centre for Financial Research (CFR).
    9. Hendrik Hakenes & Isabel Schnabel, 2014. "Bank Bonuses and Bailouts," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 46(s1), pages 259-288, February.
    10. Paul Oyer, 1998. "Fiscal Year Ends and Nonlinear Incentive Contracts: The Effect on Business Seasonality," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(1), pages 149-185.
    11. Anat R. Admati & Peter M. DeMarzo & Martin F. Hellwig & Paul Pfleiderer, 2010. "Fallacies, Irrelevant Facts, and Myths in the Discussion of Capital Regulation: Why Bank Equity is Not Expensive," Discussion Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2010_42, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.
    12. Ing-Haw Cheng & Harrison Hong & Jose Scheinkman, 2010. "Yesterday's Heroes: Compensation and Creative Risk-Taking," NBER Chapters, in: Market Institutions and Financial Market Risk, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Michiel Bijlsma & Jan Boone & Gijsbert Zwart, 2018. "Competition for traders and risk," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 49(4), pages 855-876, December.
    14. Thomas Philippon & Ariell Reshef, 2012. "Wages and Human Capital in the U.S. Finance Industry: 1909--2006," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 127(4), pages 1551-1609.
    15. Fahlenbrach, Rüdiger & Stulz, René M., 2011. "Bank CEO incentives and the credit crisis," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(1), pages 11-26, January.
    16. Rüdiger Fahlenbrach, 2009. "Shareholder Rights, Boards, and CEO Compensation," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 13(1), pages 81-113.
    17. John Thanassoulis, 2012. "The Case for Intervening in Bankers’ Pay," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 67(3), pages 849-895, June.
    18. Fields, L. Paige & Fraser, Donald R., 1999. "On the compensation implications of commercial bank entry into investment banking," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 23(8), pages 1261-1276, August.
    19. Viral Acharya & Marco Pagano & Paolo Volpin, 2016. "Seeking Alpha: Excess Risk Taking and Competition for Managerial Talent," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 29(10), pages 2565-2599.
    20. Vikas Agarwal & Naveen D. Daniel & Narayan Y. Naik, 2009. "Role of Managerial Incentives and Discretion in Hedge Fund Performance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 64(5), pages 2221-2256, October.
    21. Shawn Cole & Martin Kanz & Leora Klapper, 2015. "Incentivizing Calculated Risk-Taking: Evidence from an Experiment with Commercial Bank Loan Officers," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 70(2), pages 537-575, April.
    22. DeYoung, Robert & Peng, Emma Y. & Yan, Meng, 2013. "Executive Compensation and Business Policy Choices at U.S. Commercial Banks," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 48(1), pages 165-196, February.
    23. Tzioumis, Konstantinos & Gee, Matthew, 2013. "Nonlinear incentives and mortgage officers’ decisions," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 107(2), pages 436-453.
    24. Sumit Agarwal & Faye H. Wang, 2009. "Perverse incentives at the banks? Evidence from a natural experiment," Working Paper Series WP-09-08, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    25. Harald Hau & Marcel Thum, 2009. "Subprime Crisis and Board (In-)Competence: Private vs. Public Banks in Germany," CESifo Working Paper Series 2640, CESifo.
    26. Ian Larkin, 2014. "The Cost of High-Powered Incentives: Employee Gaming in Enterprise Software Sales," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 32(2), pages 199-227.
    27. Ben-David, Itzhak & Agarwal, Sumit, 2012. "Do Loan Officers' Incentives Lead to Lax Lending Standards?," Working Paper Series 2012-07, Ohio State University, Charles A. Dice Center for Research in Financial Economics.
    28. Marc CHESNEY & Jacob STROMBERG & Alexander F. WAGNER, 2010. "Risk-taking Incentives, Governance,and Losses in the Financial Crisis," Swiss Finance Institute Research Paper Series 10-18, Swiss Finance Institute, revised Jul 2010.
    29. Acharya, Viral & Litov, Lubomir P. & Sepe, Simone M., 2014. "Seeking Alpha, Taking Risk: Evidence from Non-executive Pay in U.S. Bank Holding Companies," Working Papers 13-18, University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School, Weiss Center.
    30. Bell, Brian & Van Reenen, John, 2010. "Bankers' pay and extreme wage inequality in the UK," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 28780, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    31. Massimo Massa, 2009. "Incentives and Mutual Fund Performance: Higher Performance or Just Higher Risk Taking?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(5), pages 1777-1815, May.
    32. Adams, Renée & Keloharju, Matti & Knüpfer, Samuli, 2018. "Are CEOs born leaders? Lessons from traits of a million individuals," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 130(2), pages 392-408.
    33. Christina E. Bannier & Eberhard Feess & Natalie Packham, 2013. "Competition, Bonuses, and Risk-taking in the Banking Industry," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 17(2), pages 653-690.
    34. Michiel Bijlsma & Gijsbert Zwart & Jan Boone, 2012. "Competition for traders and risk," CPB Discussion Paper 204, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
    35. Harald Hau, 2001. "Location Matters: An Examination of Trading Profits," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(5), pages 1959-1983, October.
    36. Hagendorff, Jens & Vallascas, Francesco, 2011. "CEO pay incentives and risk-taking: Evidence from bank acquisitions," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 1078-1095, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Gietl, Daniel & Haufler, Andreas, 2018. "Bonus taxes and international competition for bank managers," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 41-60.
    2. Matthias Efing & Harald Hau & Patrick Kampkktter & Jean-Charles Rochet, 2018. "Bank Bonus Pay as a Risk Sharing Contract," Working Papers hal-01847442, HAL.
    3. Matthias Efing & Harald Hau & Patrick Kampkötter & Johannes Steinbrecher, 2015. "Die Dosis macht das Gift – eine Analyse zum Einfluss von Bonuszahlungen auf die Profitabilität und das Risiko von Banken," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 68(03), pages 23-31, February.
    4. Colonnello, Stefano & Koetter, Michael & Wagner, Konstantin, 2020. "Effectiveness and (in)efficiencies of compensation regulation: Evidence from the EU banker bonus cap," IWH Discussion Papers 7/2018, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    5. Jason Allen & James R. Thompson, 2016. "Capital Structure, Pay Structure and Job Termination," Staff Working Papers 16-12, Bank of Canada.
    6. Allen, Jason & Thompson, James R., 2019. "Variable pay: Is it for the worker or the firm?," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 551-566.
    7. Udo Milkau, 2017. "Risk Culture during the Last 2000 Years—From an Aleatory Society to the Illusion of Risk Control," International Journal of Financial Studies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 5(4), pages 1-20, December.
    8. Surajeet Chakravarty & Sumedh Dalwai & Pradeep Kumar, 2020. "Incentives and Performance of Agents in a Microfinance Bank," Discussion Papers 2002, University of Exeter, Department of Economics.
    9. Larry D. Wall, 2020. "Is stricter regulation of incentive compensation the missing piece?," Journal of Banking Regulation, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 21(1), pages 82-94, March.
    10. Cerasi, Vittoria & Deininger, Sebastian M. & Gambacorta, Leonardo & Oliviero, Tommaso, 2020. "How post-crisis regulation has affected bank CEO compensation," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 104(C).
    11. Sean M. Harkin & Davide S. Mare & Jonathan N. Crook, 2019. "Average pay in banks: do agency problems and bank performance matter?," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 53(1), pages 101-122, July.
    12. Axel Wieneke, 2016. "Better Financial Innovation via Innovative Finance of Supervisors," Economic Papers, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 35(1), pages 16-23, March.
    13. Gietl, Daniel, 2018. "Overconfidence and Bailouts," Rationality and Competition Discussion Paper Series 132, CRC TRR 190 Rationality and Competition.
    14. Aptus, Elias & Britz, Volker & Gersbach, Hans, 2014. "On the economics of crisis contracts," CFS Working Paper Series 453, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
    15. Elias Aptus & Volker Britz & Hans Gersbach, 2020. "Crisis Contracts," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 70(1), pages 121-164, July.
    16. Christina Atanasova & Mingxin Li & Yevgeny Mugerman & Mehrdad Rastan, 2019. "Government guarantees and the risk-taking of financial institutions: evidence from a regulatory experiment," Journal of Asset Management, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 20(6), pages 476-492, October.
    17. Hamid Boustanifar & Everett Grant & Ariell Reshef, 2016. "Wages and human capital in finance: international evidence, 1970-2005," Globalization Institute Working Papers 266, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
    18. Stieglitz, Moritz & Wagner, Konstantin, 2020. "Marginal returns to talent for material risk takers in banking," IWH Discussion Papers 20/2020, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    19. Morrison, Alan & Thanassoulis, John, 2017. "Ethical standards and cultural assimilation in financial services," CEPR Discussion Papers 12060, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Acharya, Viral & Litov, Lubomir P. & Sepe, Simone M., 2014. "Seeking Alpha, Taking Risk: Evidence from Non-executive Pay in U.S. Bank Holding Companies," Working Papers 13-18, University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School, Weiss Center.
    2. Eberhard Feess & Ansgar Wohlschlegel, 2018. "Bank capital requirements and mandatory deferral of compensation," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 53(2), pages 206-242, April.
    3. Matthias Efing & Harald Hau & Patrick Kampkötter & Johannes Steinbrecher, 2015. "Die Dosis macht das Gift – eine Analyse zum Einfluss von Bonuszahlungen auf die Profitabilität und das Risiko von Banken," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 68(03), pages 23-31, February.
    4. Thanassoulis, John, 2014. "Bank pay caps, bank risk, and macroprudential regulation," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 139-151.
    5. Larry D. Wall, 2020. "Is stricter regulation of incentive compensation the missing piece?," Journal of Banking Regulation, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 21(1), pages 82-94, March.
    6. Gietl, Daniel & Haufler, Andreas, 2018. "Bonus taxes and international competition for bank managers," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 41-60.
    7. Jen-Wen Chang & Simpson Zhang, 2018. "Competitive Pay and Excessive Manager Risk-taking," Working Papers 18-02, Office of Financial Research, US Department of the Treasury.
    8. Cerasi, Vittoria & Deininger, Sebastian M. & Gambacorta, Leonardo & Oliviero, Tommaso, 2020. "How post-crisis regulation has affected bank CEO compensation," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 104(C).
    9. King, Timothy & Srivastav, Abhishek & Williams, Jonathan, 2016. "What's in an education? Implications of CEO education for bank performance," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 287-308.
    10. Ing-Haw Cheng & Sahil Raina & Wei Xiong, 2014. "Wall Street and the Housing Bubble," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(9), pages 2797-2829, September.
    11. Jarque, Arantxa & Prescott, Edward Simpson, 2020. "Banker compensation, relative performance, and bank risk," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 56(C).
    12. Shah, Syed Zulfiqar Ali & Akbar, Saeed & Liu, Jia & Liu, Ziyu & Cao, Sichen, 2017. "CEO compensation and banks’ risk-taking during pre and post financial crisis periods," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 1489-1503.
    13. Gande, Amar & Kalpathy, Swaminathan, 2017. "CEO compensation and risk-taking at financial firms: Evidence from U.S. federal loan assistance," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 131-150.
    14. Colonnello, Stefano & Koetter, Michael & Wagner, Konstantin, 2020. "Effectiveness and (in)efficiencies of compensation regulation: Evidence from the EU banker bonus cap," IWH Discussion Papers 7/2018, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    15. Roland Bénabou & Jean Tirole, 2016. "Bonus Culture: Competitive Pay, Screening, and Multitasking," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 124(2), pages 305-370.
    16. Bennett, Rosalind L. & Güntay, Levent & Unal, Haluk, 2015. "Inside debt, bank default risk, and performance during the crisis," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 487-513.
    17. Behr, Patrick & Drexler, Alejandro & Gropp, Reint & Guettler, Andre, 2020. "Financial Incentives and Loan Officer Behavior: Multitasking and Allocation of Effort under an Incomplete Contract," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 55(4), pages 1243-1267, June.
    18. Viral Acharya & Marco Pagano & Paolo Volpin, 2016. "Seeking Alpha: Excess Risk Taking and Competition for Managerial Talent," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 29(10), pages 2565-2599.
    19. Bhagat, Sanjai & Bolton, Brian & Lu, Jun, 2015. "Size, leverage, and risk-taking of financial institutions," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 520-537.
    20. Koch, Timothy W. & Waggoner, Daniel F. & Wall, Larry D., 2018. "Incentive compensation, accounting discretion and bank capital," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 119-140.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Trading Income; Bank Risk; Incentive Pay; Bonus Payments;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • G20 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - General
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • D22 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Empirical Analysis

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:chf:rpseri:rp1455. 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/fameech.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Ridima Mittal (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/fameech.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.