The fiduciary oversight expected from the board of directors has intensified because of corporate scandals of corruption and fraudulent financial reporting within the US. The Federal Government, Securities and Exchange Commission, American stock exchanges, and shareholders are demanding corporate transparency in these matters. This longitudinal study examines CEO duality of the largest firms in the US as a whole and by industry sector. Concentrating on the agency theory, this paper investigates the two-tier compliance status within the largest 500 firms in the US, as reported by Fortune Magazine in 2008 and 2010. This study seeks to reveal the degree to which CEO duality roles exist today in large US publicly traded corporations. The investigation began by reviewing the 2008 CEO duality status. Further analysis incorporated the 2010 top 500 revenue-generating firms in the US. The combination of titles held by CEOs remained consistent from 2008 to 2010. However, in 2008, CEO/Chairman title ranked first and it ranked third in 2010, which is a 68.4 percent decrease from 2008 to 2010. Further review reveals CEO/President title witnessed a 110 percent increase from 2008 to 2010 and ranks first in 2010. The 2010 increase in CEO/President titles and a decrease in CEO/Chairman titles are consistent with the principal-agency theory. There is a gap within the existing literature addressing the current governance trends within large US companies in order to heighten corporate disclosure and transparency. This research study can have global implications because of the internationalization of capital markets and the volume of cross-listings.
Abels, Patricia B. and Martelli, Joseph T.
"Corporate Governance and Transparency: A Research Study Investigating CEO Duality in Fortune Ranked Companies,"
Journal of the North American Management Society: Vol. 7:
1, Article 1.
Available at: https://thekeep.eiu.edu/jnams/vol7/iss1/1