Many business people who play golf says there's no better place to conduct their companies' affairs than on the links.
Shareholders in the companies with CEOs who golf heavily might take issue with that idea in light of a recent study by professors Lee Biggerstaff of Miami University of Ohio, David Cicero of the University of Alabama and Andy Puckett of the University of Tennessee.
Their study, published by Social Science Research Network
, finds that CEOs play more golf when they have lower equity-based incentives.
"CEOs that golf frequently (i.e., those in the top quartile of golf play, who play at least 22 rounds per year) are associated with firms that have lower operating performance and firm values," the scholars write. Sound like somebody needs a mulligan.
It appears that "CEO shirking causes lower firm performance," the professors write. Presumably they equate golfing with shirking.
"We find that boards are more likely to replace CEOs who shirk, but CEOs with longer tenures or weaker governance environments appear to avoid disciplinary consequences."
Some critics of President Obama complains that he golfs too much. Last month he played his 200th round since entering the White House in January 2009, Mark Knoller of CBS News tweeted
But, "while 200 rounds of golf sounds like a lot, Obama still has a long way to go to catch two other notorious golfing presidents," the Golf Channel
"According to Don Van Natta Jr.'s book First Off the Tee, Woodrow Wilson was estimated to have played 1,200 rounds of golf while in office, but it could have been as high as 1,600, twice as many as Augusta National member Dwight Eisenhower."
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