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Does improved information improve incentives?

Author

Listed:
  • Chaigneau, Pierre
  • Edmans, Alex
  • Gottlieb, Daniel

Abstract

This paper studies the value of more precise signals on agent performance in an optimal contracting model with endogenous effort. With limited liability, the agent's wage is increasing in output only if output exceeds a threshold, else it is zero regardless of output. If the threshold is sufficiently high, the agent only beats it, and is rewarded for increasing output through greater effort, if there is a high noise realization. Thus, a fall in output volatility reduces effort incentives—information and effort are substitutes—offsetting the standard effect that improved information lowers the cost of compensation. We derive conditions relating the incentive effect to the underlying parameters of the agency problem.

Suggested Citation

  • Chaigneau, Pierre & Edmans, Alex & Gottlieb, Daniel, 2018. "Does improved information improve incentives?," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 102227, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:102227
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    File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/102227/
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    executive compensation; limited liability; options; relative performance evaluation; risk management;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D86 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Economics of Contract Law
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill
    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
    • J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods

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