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From the supply side, the question is what motivates a firm to grant a backdated option, and from the demand side, what motivates an executive to demand (or, at the very least, accept) a backdated option? Both sets of motivations arise from the quantitative and qualitative benefits, costs, and risks of issuing and receiving backdated options. Certain AMT may be carried forward and applied to reduce the general tax payable in subsequent years (to the extent that the general tax exceeds the tentative alternative minimum tax liability for the subsequent year). There are two different points in time at which this value can be considered. At that time, the Black-Scholes option pricing model (or a variant of this model) could be used to estimate the monetary value that an executive actually receives when granted a backdated stock option. However, regardless of the Black-Scholes value of a backdated option (relative to an at-the-money option) at the time of receipt, what is ultimately of interest for executives is the benefit that backdating provides in monetary value, assuming they eventually exercise the options. We therefore focus on the value at exercise (and eventual sale of the shares) and demonstrate the role the income tax regime plays in determining the after-tax value to the executive. The long-term capital gains rate remains applicable for AMT purposes; in other words, the reduced rate is not treated as a tax preference for AMT purposes. The practice of backdating executive stock options has received significant attention in the U. financial and legal literature, and has recently begun to be discussed in the Canadian legal literature. Backdating, in its most basic form, is the use of hindsight to selectively pick a local low point in a stock’s trading price and issue executive stock options stipulating the selected date as the grant date when, in fact, the options are granted at a later date. In 2003, the rate was reduced to 5% for individuals in the lowest two income brackets and 15% for all others. Because the backdated options’ strike price is lower than the market price on the actual grant date, the recipient has received something of greater monetary value (even if the options have not yet vested) than a correctly dated at-the-money option. Companies could reward executives with cash compensation or additional properly dated and priced incentive awards, including options, rather than engage in dubious backdating practices. It is clear that there must be reasons other than greed that have led so many to backdate executive options. Academics, regulators, and practitioners alike have tried to gain a better understanding of these incentives and the roles they have played in the backdating scandal; however, there is as of yet no consensus regarding the causes of backdating. This is problematic because policy, legislative, or regulatory changes are unlikely to be effective if the root causes are unknown. In 2008, the long-term capital gain rate for individuals in the lowest two tax brackets (currently 5% and 15%) was further reduced to zero. All employee stock options share the same general tax treatment in two areas. annual salary or bonus income), which is taxable in the year it is received, there are no tax consequences when stock options are granted or when they vest; rather, under subsection 7(1), a tax liability does not arise until the time the option is exercised, at the earliest. The amount that must be included in income from employment upon exercise (or later, if certain conditions are met) is equal to the difference between the fair market value of the stock on the date the option is exercised and the strike price. A., the taxable portion is calculated as one-half of the capital gain or capital loss. There are, however, several exceptions to the general rules described above that affect both the amount and timing of the inclusion. Second, upon the sale of the stock acquired pursuant to the option, the difference between the proceeds of disposition of the stock and the fair market value of the stock on the date the option is exercised is taxed as a capital gain or capital loss, as the case may be. One exception concerns stock options granted by a Canadian-controlled private corporation (“CCPC”). To be precise, the AMT imposed is the amount by which the tentative minimum tax liability exceeds the regular tax liability. The tentative minimum tax liability is calculated by recomputing regular tax liability, first by adding back to taxable income tax preference items and by making certain adjustments in order to determine the alternative minimum taxable income (“AMTI”), then by applying the appropriate AMT rate to the amount by which AMTI exceeds the taxpayer’s exemption amount.
S. It is important to understand the differences in these rules, particularly the extent to which these differences affect the after-tax return to a Canadian executive compared to a U. Part II considers these personal income tax rules in detail. For individuals, the exemption amount depends on whether the individual is married and filing a joint return (in which case the amount is ,000) or is a surviving spouse (,000) or is single (,750).
Most of the research to date has focused on supply side factors (e.g., accounting treatment, securities regulations, and corporate taxation), while there has been little discussion of demand side factors.
While understanding the propensity to backdate undoubtedly requires insight on the supply side factors to backdating (as it is the firms that ultimately grant executive stock options), without demand there would be no supply.
Instead, we are simply advocating that a thorough explanation of the causes of backdating necessitates in-depth consideration of each relevant factor in turn and its potential contribution to backdating. We appreciate that income tax treatment is one piece of a larger puzzle that constitutes demand for backdated options by executives. The amount included in income (for both regular tax and AMT purposes) is the difference between the sale price of the share and the strike price under the option.
Another piece is the insider reporting obligations imposed upon some executives by securities regulations. Given a lenient disclosure regime for reporting the grant and exercise of stock options, as some have argued currently exists in Canada, backdating could easily go undetected.
Personal income taxation of stock options in Canada is notably less complex and more generous from the employee’s perspective than in the United States. The AMT rate for individuals is 26% of such amount up to $175,000 and 28% of any excess.