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CEO Compensation, Performance Variables, and Socially Responsible Investing

David N. Hurtt (Western Michigan University)
Jerry G. Kreuze (Western Michigan University)
Sheldon A. Langsam (Western Michigan University)

American Journal of Business

ISSN: 1935-5181

Article publication date: 22 April 2000

Abstract

Significant investment dollars are now allocated to companies deemed by investors as socially responsible. This socially responsible theme contends that corporations should be held accountable for the totality of their actions and decisions, including CEO compensation levels. This paper investigates whether CEO compensation levels are more associated with traditional performance measures for socially responsible firms than for firms deemed not socially responsible, with the assumption being that social choice firms will be more sensitive to and may attempt to align CEO compensation levels with corporate performance. Rank correlation analysis and regression results using nine performance variables for 270 firms indicated that CEO compensation levels at social choice companies were more highly associated with performance variables than those at nonsocial companies. The study results suggest that social choice companies, in addition to their other corporate good deeds, seem to include CEO compensation levels as a part of their overall corporate decision process.

Keywords

Citation

Hurtt, D.N., Kreuze, J.G. and Langsam, S.A. (2000), "CEO Compensation, Performance Variables, and Socially Responsible Investing", American Journal of Business, Vol. 15 No. 1, pp. 39-46. https://doi.org/10.1108/19355181200000004

Publisher

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MCB UP Ltd

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