Canadian bankers among Top 10 highest paid in North American survey

TORONTO – Canadian bankers were among some of the highest-paid banking executives in North America last year, with three in the Top 10, according to a new list compiled by Bloomberg Markets magazine.

In all, six Canadian bank CEOs were in the Top 20, led by the Royal Bank of Canada’s (TSX:RY) Gordon Nixon, who came in at No. 4.

Nixon’s total pay package was US$12.6 million in 2012 according to the listings, up 25 per cent from the year before, when he was in eighth place.

Bank of Nova Scotia’s (TSX:BNS) Richard Waugh was bumped down one spot to seventh place, with US$11.1 million, followed by TD Bank’s (TSX:TD) Ed Clark, who was No. 8 on the list with US$10.8 million.

Clark’s pay actually went down by almost five per cent from the year before, when he was at No. 5, as did that of three other Canadian bank CEOs on the list.

Gerald McCaughey, CEO of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (TSX:CM), took home US$9.3 million, nearly eight per cent less than the year before. That was still good for 11th place, but down from ninth in 2011.

The Bank of Montreal’s (TSX:BMO) William Downe — No. 12 — took in US$9.2 million, seven per cent less than in 2011, when he ranked No. 10 on the list.

National Bank of Canada (TSX:NA) chief Louis Vachon rounded up the Canadian bankers on the list at No. 17 with US$7.2 million. That was 1.4 per cent less than he made in 2011, when he held the 14th spot.

But no Canadian bank CEO came even close to matching the salary of the list’s top earner, Lloyd Blankfein, who was paid US$26 million in 2012 — a 73 per cent raise for his work in turning around the fortunes of Goldman Sachs.

The Bloomberg Markets magazine rankings also put Nixon, Waugh and Clark among some of the most overpaid CEOs when comparing compensation to a bank’s average asset, stock performance and return on equity.

Downe, McCaughey and Vachon were amongst the most underpaid.

The rankings are being published in the magazine’s July 2013 issue.

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