The Effects of Accounting Treatment and Financial Crisis on the Stock Option Plans of Italian Companies

Francesco Avallone, Alberto Quagli, Paola Ramassa

Abstract


Many studies state that favourable accounting treatment has been one of the main reasons behind employee stock options. In addition, stock options have recently been the target of growing criticism with a possible influence on incentive effectiveness and outrage costs. In such a perspective, the main purpose of the paper is to explore the impact of IFRS 2 and of the recent financial crisis on stock option compensation. Empirical evidence suggests that: (i) IFRS 2 did not have a significant effect on stock option granting, (ii) the issue of stock options is less likely to occur during the financial crisis.


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