Median CEO pay rises to $9.7 million in 2012

By Christina Rexrode May 22nd 2013, Bloomberg Businessweek

CEO pay has been going in one direction for the past three years: up.

The head of a typical large public company made $9.7 million in 2012, a 6.5 percent increase from a year earlier that was aided by a rising stock market, according to an analysis by The Associated Press using data from Equilar, an executive pay research firm.

CEO pay, which fell two years straight during the Great Recession but rose 24 percent in 2010 and 6 percent in 2011, has never been higher.

But the numbers don’t tell the whole story. After years of pressure from corporate governance activists unhappy about big payouts, many companies have revamped their compensation formulas. They have awarded a bigger chunk of compensation in stock to align pay more closely to performance, become more transparent about how compensation decisions are made and in some cases promised to claw back pay from fired executives. Continue reading…

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