CEO how agree to be paid no salary, or a minimal one, are viewed as heroes in media and the public. But in all the cases I know off, they are of course also compensated with stock options and other deferred pay schemes. So does it really make a difference to being paid a substantial salary?
Gilberto Loureiro, Anil Makhija and Dan Zhang find that not everything is rosy abut these $1 CEOs: They tend to be overconfident and thus expect to have very high compensation in the future. As a consequence, they try to deflect future criticism about their earnings by putting on an angel face now. Also, their overconfidence implies that shareholders do not fare well with them, probably the reason institutional investors avoid them. In other words, be wart of $1 CEOs!