Golden Handshakes

Golden handshake refers to the severance pay for executives at the time of exit by retirement or termination (about 80 percent of golden handshakes). It is related to the well-known concept of the “golden parachute,” which is the severance pay for top executives in connection with a takeover. A golden handshake can be either voluntary or enforced by the board of directors, and not necessarily in conjunction with a takeover. The topic is controversial because the press covers closely the huge amounts of compensation paid to the chief executive officers (CEOs) of companies, which may include a golden handshake. Golden handshakes should therefore be studied in the larger context of the issue of CEO compensation, which this entry now does. The top 10 highest-paid CEOs ...

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