[1] "The Effect of the Pay Ratio Mandate on CEO Compensation"


The pay ratio mandate requires most US public firms to explicitly disclose the ratio of CEO compensation to the compensation of the median employee. I exploit two features of the mandate which allow me to identify the causal effect of the mandate on the level and type of CEO compensation, and, in turn, the firms' behavior. My results show that the mandate prompts firms to shift toward performance-based compensation, primarily by increasing equity-based pay and to a lesser degree by reducing salary. Furthermore, the shift in CEO incentives results in greater debt ratios and R&D investments.

[2] "Religiosity and Risk Taking: Is There a Demand-Side Effect?" (with Thomas Berry-Stoelzle)

Journal of Corporate Finance, forthcoming.

Full paper; Internet Appendix

Conferences and seminars:

  • Eastern Finance Association, Miami, FL, April 2019

  • Financial Management Association, San Diego, CA, October 2018

  • American Risk and Insurance Association, Chicago, IL, August 2018

  • The University of Georgia, February 2018

  • The University of Iowa, January 2018


Religiosity may impact firm risk taking via its risk averse employees or through risk-sensitive demand. Using detailed financial statements of property-liability insurance companies, we find that both religiosity at firms’ headquarters and the religiosity of firms’ largest geographic market are negatively related to firm risk taking. For firms with one salient market, the impact of market religiosity is approximately the same order of magnitude as headquarter religiosity. Our evidence suggests that firm risk taking is influenced by customer demand.