CEO salary nearly drives GE investors crazy

The logo of U.S. conglomerate General Electric is seen on the company’s building in Belfort, France, October 19, 2019.

Join now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com

Register

NEW YORK, May 4 (Reuters Breakingviews) – Investors in General Electric (GE.N) are pretending to be angry over executive pay. Only two-thirds voted in favor of the company’s executive compensation package at its May 4 annual meeting. That’s better than the 42% who voted last year, but below the 87% average at companies tracked by Proxy Monitor.

Discontent can seem harsh. General Manager Larry Culp just took a $10 million pay cut read more, and recently bought $5 million worth of GE stock. Even so, the $22 million he took home last year is high considering GE shares fell 20% during his tenure. Culp can still pocket $124 million if he puts the stock back where it was six months ago and keeps it there.

Culp’s position and salary are secure. Non-binding voting contrasts with shareholders effortlessly re-electing GE’s directors — an area where they have real agency. For a struggling company, an overpaid CEO is better than none at all. (By John Foley)

Join now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com

Register

To follow @Breakingviews on Twitter

Capital Calls – More concise information on global finance:

Aston Martin’s new driver faces a wild ride Read more

Airbnb dodges the post-Covid crisis Read more

BP’s exceptional tax shield still leaves it exposed Read more

JetBlue Antitrust Risk Haunts Spirit Read More

US consumers are holding up better than Amazon Read More

Join now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com

Register

Editing by Peter Thal Larsen and Sharon Lam

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

The opinions expressed are those of the author. They do not reflect the views of Reuters News, which is committed to integrity, independence and freedom from bias by principles of trust.