You are here

Essays on the Effect of Excess Compensation and Governance Changes on Firm Value

Download pdf | Full Screen View

Date Issued:
2012
Abstract/Description:
This dissertation consists of three essays on the effect of excess compensation and corporate governance changes on the firm's performance. The first paper utilizes a cost minimization stochastic frontier approach to investigate the efficiency of director total compensation. Our findings suggest that board members are over compensated. We show that, on average, the director actual compensation level is above the efficient compensation level by around 63%. Our results suggest that an increase in director excess compensation decreases the likelihood of CEO turnover, reduces the turnover-performance sensitivity, and increases managerial entrenchment. Thus, the surplus in director compensation is directly associated with managerial job security and entrenchment. Furthermore, although director excess compensation is not significantly inversely related to the firm's future performance, it has an indirect negative effect on future performance through its impact on the entrenchment-performance relationship. Therefore, this essay proposes that the overcompensation of directors is directly associated with a board culture predicated by mutual back-scratching and collusion between the CEO and the board members. The second essay tests the effect of an exogenous shock, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) of 2002, on the structure of corporate boards and their efficiency as a monitoring mechanism. The results suggest an increase in the participation of independent directors at the expense of insiders. Consequently, we investigate the implications of board composition changes on CEO turnover and firm value. We document a noticeable reduction in CEO turnover in the post-SOX period. We also demonstrate that, after SOX, a board dominated by independent directors is less likely to remove a CEO due to poor performance. Finally, we highlight a negative association between the change in board composition and firm value. We propose that our findings are predicated on an off equilibrium result whereby firms were forced to modify their endogenously chosen board composition. Therefore, contrary to the legislators' objectives, we suggest that the change in board structure brought about inefficient monitoring and promoted an unfavorable tradeoff between independent directors and insiders. The third essay examines the relationship between the firm's governance structure and its value during different economic conditions. We show that both relative industry turnover and CEO entrenchment increase during economic downturns. We also find that relative industry turnover and managerial entrenchment have opposite impacts on the value of the firm throughout the recessionary period. While industry turnover leads to an appreciation in firm value, managerial entrenchment reduces shareholders' wealth. The negative impact of managerial entrenchment on firm value, however, outweighs the positive impact of industry turnover. Accordingly, we propose that a recession provides managers with a good opportunity to camouflage their behavior and extract more private benefits and, thus, blame the poor performance on bad economic conditions.
Title: Essays on the Effect of Excess Compensation and Governance Changes on Firm Value.
21 views
14 downloads
Name(s): Dah, Mustafa, Author
Frye, Melissa, Committee Chair
Whyte, Ann, Committee Member
Gatchev, Vladimir, Committee Member
Schnitzlein, Charles, Committee Member
Campbell, Terry, Committee Member
University of Central Florida, Degree Grantor
Type of Resource: text
Date Issued: 2012
Publisher: University of Central Florida
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: This dissertation consists of three essays on the effect of excess compensation and corporate governance changes on the firm's performance. The first paper utilizes a cost minimization stochastic frontier approach to investigate the efficiency of director total compensation. Our findings suggest that board members are over compensated. We show that, on average, the director actual compensation level is above the efficient compensation level by around 63%. Our results suggest that an increase in director excess compensation decreases the likelihood of CEO turnover, reduces the turnover-performance sensitivity, and increases managerial entrenchment. Thus, the surplus in director compensation is directly associated with managerial job security and entrenchment. Furthermore, although director excess compensation is not significantly inversely related to the firm's future performance, it has an indirect negative effect on future performance through its impact on the entrenchment-performance relationship. Therefore, this essay proposes that the overcompensation of directors is directly associated with a board culture predicated by mutual back-scratching and collusion between the CEO and the board members. The second essay tests the effect of an exogenous shock, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) of 2002, on the structure of corporate boards and their efficiency as a monitoring mechanism. The results suggest an increase in the participation of independent directors at the expense of insiders. Consequently, we investigate the implications of board composition changes on CEO turnover and firm value. We document a noticeable reduction in CEO turnover in the post-SOX period. We also demonstrate that, after SOX, a board dominated by independent directors is less likely to remove a CEO due to poor performance. Finally, we highlight a negative association between the change in board composition and firm value. We propose that our findings are predicated on an off equilibrium result whereby firms were forced to modify their endogenously chosen board composition. Therefore, contrary to the legislators' objectives, we suggest that the change in board structure brought about inefficient monitoring and promoted an unfavorable tradeoff between independent directors and insiders. The third essay examines the relationship between the firm's governance structure and its value during different economic conditions. We show that both relative industry turnover and CEO entrenchment increase during economic downturns. We also find that relative industry turnover and managerial entrenchment have opposite impacts on the value of the firm throughout the recessionary period. While industry turnover leads to an appreciation in firm value, managerial entrenchment reduces shareholders' wealth. The negative impact of managerial entrenchment on firm value, however, outweighs the positive impact of industry turnover. Accordingly, we propose that a recession provides managers with a good opportunity to camouflage their behavior and extract more private benefits and, thus, blame the poor performance on bad economic conditions.
Identifier: CFE0004202 (IID), ucf:49029 (fedora)
Note(s): 2012-05-01
Ph.D.
Business Administration, Dean's Office CBA
Doctoral
This record was generated from author submitted information.
Subject(s): Director Compensation -- CEO Turnover -- CEO Entrenchment -- Board Entrenchment -- Board Structure -- Sarbanes-Oxley Act -- Recession -- Corporate Governance -- Firm Value
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/ucf/fd/CFE0004202
Restrictions on Access: public 2012-05-15
Host Institution: UCF

In Collections