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Employee Stock Purchase Plans

Author

Listed:
  • Gary V. Engelhardt
  • Brigitte C. Madrian

Abstract

Employee stock purchase plans (ESPPs) are designed to promote employee stock ownership broadly within the firm and provide another tax-deferred vehicle for individual capital accumulation in addition to traditional pensions, 401(k)s, and stock options. We outline the individual and corporate tax treatment of ESPPs and the circumstances under which ESPPs will be preferred to cash compensation from a purely tax perspective. We then examine empirically ESPP participation using administrative data from 1997-2001 for a large health services company that employs approximately 30,000 people. The picture that emerges from the analysis of these data suggests that there is substantial non-participation in these plans even though all employees could increase gross compensation through participation. We discuss a number of potential explanations for non-participation.

Suggested Citation

  • Gary V. Engelhardt & Brigitte C. Madrian, 2004. "Employee Stock Purchase Plans," NBER Working Papers 10421, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:10421
    Note: AG CF LS PE
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Ilona Babenko & Rik Sen, 2016. "Do Nonexecutive Employees Have Valuable Information? Evidence from Employee Stock Purchase Plans," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 62(7), pages 1878-1898, July.
    2. Thomas Rapp & Nicolas Aubert, 2011. "Bank Employee Incentives and Stock Purchase Plans Participation," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 40(3), pages 185-203, December.
    3. Bryson, Alex & Freeman, Richard B., 2010. "To join or not to join? Factors influencing employee share plan membership in a multinational corporation," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 48915, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    4. Nicolas Aubert & Xavier Hollandts, 2015. "How Shared Capitalism Affects Employee Withdrawal: An Econometric Case Study Of A French-Listed Company," Post-Print halshs-01256759, HAL.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H2 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue
    • J3 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs

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