Do co-opted boards increase insider profitability?
Journal of Contemporary Accounting and Economics
Using a sample of U.S. firms over the period 1996–2014, this paper examines whether insider trading profitability increases with high board co-option. Indeed, we find that firms with a higher level of co-opted directors exhibit higher insider trading profitability, largely due to a lower level of managerial ability and analyst coverage. Co-opted boards are also unlikely to implement self-imposed insider trading restrictions, exacerbating this relationship. This positive association is mitigated by a higher level of external monitoring by institutional investors and if the CEO receives more performance-based incentives. Overall, co-opted directors demonstrate aligned interests with CEOs and corporate insiders rather than performing their role as monitors. As a result, a more co-opted board is positively associated with exploitative behaviour of insiders.
Open Access Status
This publication may be available as open access
Accounting and Finance Association of Australia and New Zealand