NEW YORK — A blue-ribbon panel formed by the Conference Board to address the erosion of public trust in U.S. companies is urging business leaders to reform executive compensation practices as a first step in restoring trust.

In the first of three reports, the 12-member Commission on Public Trust and Private Enterprise is asking corporate boards to take a stronger role in monitoring compensation as well as force compensation committees to cut their ties to management. The commission said Tuesday that companies should uniformly expense stock options. The panel called for more transparency and "less footnotes" about options and pay, which tend to get buried in proxy statements.

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