As part of the series of the "Finance Research Seminar", VGSF welcomes Toni Whited from the University of Michigan, Ross School of Business to present her research paper.
Relative Performance Evaluation and Strategic Competition
We examine how relative performance evaluation (RPE) affects industry competition—a question relevant for corporate boards interested in incentivizing executives. Using U.S. airline data, we estimate a dynamic game of competition with heterogenous firms in an oligopolistic market with RPE contracts. RPE naturally makes CEO compensation less sensitive to market demand. However, because RPE amplifies a firm’s cost efficiency relative to its peers, RPE does not always induce aggressive product market competition, often weakening competition from inefficient firms. While RPE induces endogenous selection of efficient firms into large, high entry-cost markets, and vice versa, RPE has little effect in uncompetitive markets.