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Backdating, tax evasion, and the unintended consequences of Canadian tax reform

  • Compton, Ryan
  • Sandler, Daniel
  • Tedds, Lindsay M.

In 1984 and 2000, significant changes were made to the tax treatment of employee stock options in Canada. Although designed to increase the use of stock options as a compensation vehicle (1984) and decease the loss of knowledge workers (2000), we argue that these tax changes were largely ineffective and perhaps unneeded. Further we demonstrate the negative unintended consequences of these actions, specifically that they reward the backdating of employee stock options and promote tax evasion, and discuss the policy implications of these unintended consequences.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 39788.

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Date of creation: 2010
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Tax Notes International 9.59(2010): pp. 671
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:39788
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  1. M. P. Narayanan & H. Nejat Seyhun, 2008. "The Dating Game: Do Managers Designate Option Grant Dates to Increase their Compensation?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 21(5), pages 1907-1945, September.
  2. Brian J. Hall & Kevin J. Murphy, 2003. "The Trouble with Stock Options," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(3), pages 49-70, Summer.
  3. Ittner, Christopher D. & Lambert, Richard A. & Larcker, David F., 2003. "The structure and performance consequences of equity grants to employees of new economy firms," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1-3), pages 89-127, January.
  4. Randall A. Heron & Erik Lie, 2009. "What Fraction of Stock Option Grants to Top Executives Have Been Backdated or Manipulated?," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 55(4), pages 513-525, April.
  5. Carpenter, Jennifer N & Remmers, Barbara, 2001. "Executive Stock Option Exercises and Inside Information," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 74(4), pages 513-34, October.
  6. John Donohue & Steven Levitt, 2000. "The Impact of Legalized Abortion on Crime," NBER Working Papers 8004, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. David Joulfaian, 2000. "Corporate Income Tax Evasion and Managerial Preferences," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(4), pages 698-701, November.
  8. Brian J. Hall & Jeffrey B. Liebman, 2000. "The Taxation of Executive Compensation," NBER Working Papers 7596, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Erik Lie, 2005. "On the Timing of CEO Stock Option Awards," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 51(5), pages 802-812, May.
  10. Brian J. Hall & Kevin J. Murphy, 2003. "The Trouble with Stock Options," NBER Working Papers 9784, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Allingham, Michael G. & Sandmo, Agnar, 1972. "Income tax evasion: a theoretical analysis," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(3-4), pages 323-338, November.
  12. David Zarifa & David Walters, 2008. "Revisiting Canada's Brain Drain: Evidence from the 2000 Cohort of Canadian University Graduates," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 34(3), pages 305-320, September.
  13. Heron, Randall A. & Lie, Erik, 2007. "Does backdating explain the stock price pattern around executive stock option grants?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(2), pages 271-295, February.
  14. Compton, Ryan & Sandler, Daniel & Tedds, Lindsay M., 2010. "Options backdating: a Canadian perspective," MPRA Paper 39787, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  15. Eli Ofek & David Yermack, 2000. "Taking Stock: Equity-Based Compensation and the Evolution of Managerial Ownership," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(3), pages 1367-1384, 06.
  16. Chip Heath & Steven Huddart & Mark Lang, 1999. "Psychological Factors and Stock Option Exercise," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(2), pages 601-627.
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