Is There a Link between Executive Equity Incentives and Accounting Fraud?
Posted: 15 Sep 2005
We compare executive equity incentives of firms accused of accounting fraud by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) during the period 1996-2003 to two samples of firms not accused of fraud. We measure equity incentives in a variety of ways and employ a battery of empirical tests. We find no consistent evidence that executive equity incentives are associated with fraud. These results stand in contrast to assertions by policy makers that incentives from stock-based compensation and the resulting equity holdings increase the likelihood of accounting fraud.
JEL Classification: M41, M43, M49, J33, G34, G32
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