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Firm Expansion and CEO Pay

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  • Lucian Bebchuk
  • Yaniv Grinstein

Abstract

We study the extent to which decisions to expand firm size are associated with increases in subsequent CEO compensation. Controlling for past stock performance, we find a positive correlation between CEO compensation and the CEO's past decisions to increase firm size. This correlation is economically meaningful; for example, other things being equal, CEOs who in the preceding three years were in the top quartile in terms of expanding by increasing the number of shares outstanding receive compensation that is higher by one-third than the compensation of CEOs belonging to the bottom quartile. We also find that stock returns are correlated with subsequent CEO pay only to the extent that they contribute to expanding firm size; only the component of past stock returns not distributed as dividends is correlated with subsequent CEO pay. Finally, we find an asymmetry between increases and decreases in size: while increases in firm size are followed by higher CEO pay, decreases in firm size are not followed by reduction in such pay. The association we find between CEOs' compensation and firm-expanding decisions undertaken earlier during their service could provide CEOs with incentives to expand firm size.

Suggested Citation

  • Lucian Bebchuk & Yaniv Grinstein, 2005. "Firm Expansion and CEO Pay," NBER Working Papers 11886, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:11886
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Bargeron, Leonce L. & Schlingemann, Frederik P. & Stulz, René M. & Zutter, Chad J., 2008. "Why do private acquirers pay so little compared to public acquirers?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(3), pages 375-390, September.
    2. Alex Edmans & Xavier Gabaix & Augustin Landier, 2007. "A Calibratable Model of Optimal CEO Incentives in Market Equilibrium," NBER Working Papers 13372, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Kräkel, Matthias & Müller, Daniel, 2015. "Merger efficiency and managerial incentives," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 51-63.
    4. Ordu, Umut & Schweizer, Denis, 2015. "Executive compensation and informed trading in acquiring firms around merger announcements," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 260-280.
    5. Yim, Soojin, 2013. "The acquisitiveness of youth: CEO age and acquisition behavior," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 250-273.
    6. Rüdiger Fahlenbrach, 2009. "Shareholder Rights, Boards, and CEO Compensation," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 13(1), pages 81-113.
    7. Johnston, James, 2007. "Independent Directors, Executive Remuneration and the Governance of the Corporation: Some Empirical Evidence from the United Kingdom," Review of Applied Economics, Review of Applied Economics, vol. 3(1-2).
    8. Itay Goldstein & Alexander Guembel & James Dow, 2008. "Incentives for Information Production in Markets where Prices Affect Real Investment," 2008 Meeting Papers 270, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    9. repec:eee:corfin:v:47:y:2017:i:c:p:88-109 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Francis, Bill & Hasan, Iftekhar & John, Kose & Sharma, Zenu, 2013. "Asymmetric benchmarking of pay in firms," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 23(C), pages 39-53.
    11. Kim, Kyonghee & Mauldin, Elaine & Patro, Sukesh, 2014. "Outside directors and board advising and monitoring performance," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(2), pages 110-131.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill
    • 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

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