No bonuses for Wells Fargo executives — just bigger salaries and stock grants

The Charlotte ObserverMarch 4, 2010 

Wells Fargo & Co.'s top executives will get much bigger paydays for 2009, including $18.7 million for chief executive John Stumpf.

Stumpf and three other top executives did not get bonuses and their perks were worth less compared to recent years. But they did get much bigger salaries and stock awards, and a few cashed in previously awarded stock options.

For Stumpf and the three other executives, a big portion of their stock awards are "retention performance shares," which the executives forfeit if they leave Wells for a competitor. The shares vest after three years, but only if the company meets certain performance goals. The board came up with the idea for retention performance shares because its executives "are being increasingly and aggressively recruited by competitors."

Wells was profitable in 2009, earning $8 billion for common shareholders, up from $2.4 billion the previous year.

The change in how the executives are paid can be seen in Stumpf's package: He got a salary of $5.6 million, a huge increase from $878,920 in 2008. He also got $13.1 million in stock awards, after two years of not getting any. He received no bonus, same as last year. His bonus two years ago was $4.2 million.

The value of his "other compensation," which can include perks such as a home security system or a car and part-time driver, was down to $72,786 from $242,167 in 2008.

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