Incentive Contracting and Value-Relevance of Earnings and Cash Flows
Posted: 25 Jan 2009
Date Written: January 24, 2009
Accounting performance measures such as earnings and cash flows are useful for both valuation and performance evaluation purposes. However, little evidence exists on whether there is any association between these two roles. In this study, we provide large sample empirical evidence that the value-relevance of earnings explains a significant amount of the cross-sectional variation in the pay-sensitivity of earnings and the incremental value-relevance of cash flows explains variation in the marginal pay-sensitivity of cash flows. We document that while both value-relevance and compensation weight on earnings decline from the sub period of 1993 to 1997 to the sub period of 1998 to 2003, both value-relevance and compensation weight on cash flows increase from the earlier sub period to the later sub period. Overall, our results provide additional evidence that value-relevance of a performance measure plays a significant role in its use for performance evaluation.
Keywords: Incentive contracting, value-relevance, earnings, cash flows, executive compensation
JEL Classification: J30, M40, M41, M46, M52
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