I examine the effect of employee equity-based compensation (EBC) on firm performance and the determinants of EBC. Using two samples, I find that firms have come to rely more heavily on EBC than in the past. For both samples, I document a significant, positive relation between Tobin's q and the percentage of employee compensation that is equity based. For accounting returns, I find a positive relation with the earlier sample. However, for the later sample I find that greater use of EBC leads to lower levels of future accounting returns. I also find that the determinants of the proportion of EBC are different between the two samples.