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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Citigroup’s Shareholder Revolt Reverberates On Wall Street

Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit was rebuffed Tuesday by shareholders. (AP)

Now that Citigroup’s shareholders have become the first at a major Wall Street firm to reject their CEO’s lavish pay package, the bank says it will listen to what its shareholders are saying. But will the rest of Wall Street?

Citigroup shareholders voted Tuesday against the $15 million pay package with a $10 million retention bonus that was granted to chief executive Vikram Pandit last year.

“C.E.O.’s deserve good pay but there’s good pay and there’s obscene pay,” Brian Wenzinger told the New York Times. He is a principal at Aronson Johnson Ortiz, a Philadelphia money management company that voted against the pay package. (The firm owns more than 5 million shares of Citigroup.)

Citigroup nearly collapsed during the financial meltdown in 2007, it took government bailout money, and Pandit took a salary of $1 until the bank returned to profitability.

The vote by Citigroup shareholders is non-binding, but shareholders at a number of other businesses not on Wall Street have rejected CEO pay in the past year, which is something that Dodd-Frank financial overhaul law allows.

Guest:

  • Joann Lublin, management news editor for the Wall Street Journal

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