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CEO Salaries

April 17, 2006

Filed under: life,money — Terry Wohlers @ 08:20

According to USA Today, many of our nation’s CEOs are doing just fine, financially. The median salary for chief executives from the 100 largest companies rose 25% to $17.9 million in 2005. This compares to a gain of 3.1% for typical American workers. The CEOs of small to midsize companies received pay that was similar to or exceeded that of large companies. 

How well did some of the CEOs do last year? Oracle’s Larry Ellison was given $74.2 million. Starbucks chairman Howard Schultz, $42.5 million. Autodesk CEO Carol Bartz, $28.9 million. Domino’s Pizza CEO David Brandon, $25.2 million. Corning chairman James Houghton, $7.4 million.

And others? Sporting goods retailer Cabela’s CEO Dennis Highby, $2.3 million. American Express CEO Ken Chenault, $16.3 million plus other bonuses. Capital One Financial CEO Richard Fairbank, $249 million in exercised stock options. Cadence Design CEO Michael Fister, $3 million in compensation and options valued at up to $23 million.

What will these people do with all their money? One year of pay is more than most people could spend in a lifetime. My hope is that it is given to charities, disaster relief funds, student scholarship programs, and other places that help those in need. Perhaps if those of us that make far less could set an example for them, they will follow suit. One can only hope.