Board Compensation in Spanish Large Corporations: From Gentlemanly Capitalism to the Rise of the Super-Manager (1926-1954)

Miguel Artola Blanco

For most of the twentieth century, Spanish corporate directors were paid with attendance fees, salaries and tantièmes. The latter was the most important form of compensation, since it represented a return on the social capital and prestige provided by directors and, as such, their amounts were calculated as a percentage of annual profits. During the period of 1926 to 1954, tantièmes experienced a slow but inexorable decline. While virtually every company kept using this compensation method, their weight became gradually reduced both in terms of profit shares and average amounts. Moreover, all evidences point to the growing importance of salaries paid to corporate managers.   

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