Executive Compensation and Corporate Income Tax: A Question of Societal Equity
Michel Coulmont, Sylvie Berthelot, Catherine Gagné

From the perspective of corporate social responsibility, which is intended to promote ethical and socially responsible behaviour by organisations, little research has focused on the tax avoidance that impedes governments’ capacity to provide education, healthcare, security and infrastructures for managing environmental issues. Inspired by the 2014 American report, Fleecing Uncle Sam, this paper compares the compensation of CEOs of firms listed on the S&P/TSX Composite Index and the amount of corporate income tax these firms pay.The analysis findings show that more than 40 of the 203 sampled firms between 2013 and 2015 paid less in income tax than in CEO compensation. Nearly 70% of these firms paid no taxes or received a refund, while only a minority of them reported a net loss. Tax cuts and other generous corporate tax measures do not seem to have had the expected effect. The results of this study show that in paying little income tax, each year, firms spent less on contributing to the growth of the economy that supports them than they spent on compensating their CEO. This situation should be documented. Are these practices acceptable from a societal perspective?

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/ijat.v6n1a4