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Corporate Governance and the Design of Stock Option Programs

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  • Sautner, Zacharias

    () (Lehrstuhl für ABWL, Finanzwirtschaft, insb. Bankbetriebslehre)

  • Weber, Martin

    () (Lehrstuhl für ABWL, Finanzwirtschaft, insb. Bankbetriebslehre)

Abstract

Investors and academics increasingly criticize that features of employee stock option (ESO) programs reflect rent-extraction by managers (managerial power view). We use a unique European data set to investigate the relationship between the design of ESO programs and corporate governance structures. We find that ownership structures are related to the ESO design in a way that is consistent with the managerial power hypothesis: when ownership concentration is low and the exposition to the U.S. capital market is little, executives extract rents by designing poor ESO plans. Moreover, firms with weak creditor rights more often have badly designed option plans. Our findings also suggest that ineffective board structures (insider-dominated boards) are related to ESO design in a way that supports the arguments of the self-dealing view.

Suggested Citation

  • Sautner, Zacharias & Weber, Martin, 2005. "Corporate Governance and the Design of Stock Option Programs," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 05-32, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim;Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
  • Handle: RePEc:xrs:sfbmaa:05-32
    Note: Financial support from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, SFB 504, at the University of Mannheim, is gratefully acknowledged.
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Sautner, Zacharias & Weber, Martin, 2005. "Stock options and employee behavior," Papers 05-26, Sonderforschungsbreich 504.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • 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
    • M52 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Compensation and Compensation Methods and Their Effects

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