This paper provides an analytical framework to study the performance of linear companding techniques proposed in the OFDM literature, thus settling the numerous controversial claims that are based solely on simulation results. Linear companding transforms are widely employed to reduce the peak-to- average-power ratio (PAPR) in orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM) systems. Two main linear companding classes have been considered in the literature: linear symmetrical transform (LST) and linear asymmetrical transform (LAST). In the literature, the bit error rate (BER) performance superiority of the basic LAST (with one discontinuity point) over the LST is claimed based on computer simulations. Also, it has been claimed that a LAST with two discontinuity points outperforms the basic LAST with one discontinuity point. These claims are however not substantiated with analytical results. Our analysis shows that these claims are, in general, not always true. We derive a sufficient condition, in terms of the companding parameters, under which the BER performance of a general LAST with M-1 discontinuity points is superior to that of LST. The derived condition explains the contradictions between different reported results in the literature and validates some other reported simulation results. It also serves as a guideline in the process of choosing proper values for companding parameters to obtain a specific trade-off between PAPR reduction capability and BER performance. In particular, the derived sufficient condition shows that the BER performance for LAST depends on the slopes of the LAST rather than on the number of discontinuity points as has been indicated so far. Moreover, we derive conditions for the companding parameters in order to keep the average transmitted power unchanged after companding. Our theoretical derivations are supported by simulation results.