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Corporate Control and Executive Selection

  • Francesco Lippi

    (University of Sassari and EIEF)

  • Fabiano Schivardi

    (University of Cagliari and EIEF)

We present a model in which the owner of the firm enjoys a private benefit from developing a personal relationship with the executives. This may lead the owner to retain a senior executive in office even though a more productive replacement is available. The model shows that the private returns of the employment relationship distort executive selection, reducing the executives’ average ability and the firm productivity. We estimate the structural parameters of the model using a panel of Italian firms with information on the nature of the controlling shareholder, matched with individual records of their executives. These estimates are used to quantify the relevance of private returns and the related productivity gap across firms characterized by four different types of ownership: government, family, conglomerate and foreign. We find that private returns are large in family and government controlled firms, while smaller with other ownership types. The resulting distortion in executive selection can account for TFP differentials between control types of about 10%. The structural estimates are fully consistent with a set of model-based OLS regressions, even though the sample moments used by the two approaches are different.

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Paper provided by Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF) in its series EIEF Working Papers Series with number 1014.

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Length: 48 pages
Date of creation: 2010
Date of revision: Jul 2010
Handle: RePEc:eie:wpaper:1014
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  1. claudio Michelacci & Fabiano Schivardi, 2008. "Does Idiosyncratic Business Risk Matter?," EIEF Working Papers Series 0813, Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF), revised Jul 2008.
  2. Iranzo, Susana & Schivardi, Fabiano & Tosetti, Elisa, 2006. "Skill Dispersion and Firm Productivity: An Analysis with Employer-Employee Matched Data," CEPR Discussion Papers 5539, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Federico Cingano & Fabiano Schivardi, 2004. "Identifying the Sources of Local Productivity Growth," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 2(4), pages 720-742, 06.
  4. Marko Tervio, 2008. "The Difference That CEOs Make: An Assignment Model Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 642-68, June.
  5. Oriana Bandiera & Luigi Guiso & Andrea Prat & Raffaella Sadun, 2012. "Matching Firms, Managers, and Incentives," CEP Discussion Papers dp1144, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  6. Nicholas Bloom & Christos Genakos & Raffaella Sadun & John Van Reenen, 2012. "Management Practices Across Firms and Countries," NBER Working Papers 17850, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Alvarez, Fernando & Lippi, Francesco, 2007. "Financial Innovation and the Transactions Demand for Cash," CEPR Discussion Papers 6472, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Xavier Gabaix & Augustin Landier, 2006. "Why Has CEO Pay Increased So Much?," 2006 Meeting Papers 518, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  9. George-Levi Gayle & Limor Golan & Robert A. Miller, . "Promotion, Turover and Compensation in the Executive Market," GSIA Working Papers 2008-E32, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
  10. Augustin Landier & Julien Sauvagnat & David Sraer & David Thesmar, 2013. "Bottom-Up Corporate Governance," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 17(1), pages 161-201.
  11. Bandiera, Oriana & Barankay, Iwan & Rasul, Imran, 2009. "Social Connections and Incentives in the Workplace: Evidence from Personnel Data," CEPR Discussion Papers 7114, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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