July 26, 2018 Read More →

Median energy/utility CEO pay package: $9.6 million


The energy sector is bucking a corporate trend. Across all major industries, CEOs running S&P 500 companies cumulatively made $10 billion in 2017 — 44% higher than what is usually reported — when you factor in their gains from the stock market, according to an Axios analysis of Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

Yes, but: Many energy stocks did pretty poorly last year. So energy CEOs overall made less than what is normally reported because their stock grant values were higher than the amount of stock they actually cashed out.

By the numbers: Within the total compensation, Axios’ Bob Herman calculated what’s known as the actual realized gains (ARG) of CEOs’ stock options and awards — shares that were actually exercised and taxed — versus the estimated fair value (EFV) of their stock that predicts future stock value and is prominently featured in the summary compensation tables of SEC filings.

  • Overall, 59 energy and utility CEOs made $668 million based on our calculations — 13% lower than the $769 million that is normally shown in the traditional EFV format. The median energy/utility CEO pay package was $9.6 million.
  • In contrast, CEOs in the tech, finance and health care industries often made a lot more in real dollars than what was normally reported.

The details: For some CEOs, to be sure, the ARG was a lot higher than the more commonly reported EFV. But for a substantial number of execs, it was lower.

More: What oil and power CEOs really make

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