Fifth Third and other small banks give CEOs big raises!

Glad to see all the coverage of this

Most of the controversy about excessive CEO pay has been around the big banks–the likes of Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) and JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM). It’s fair to say that the big banks have really responded with reasonable pay packages that passed a review in some cases by the pay czar Kenneth Feinberg (Kenneth Feinberg news).

But what about small banks? Reuters notes that some regional bank (regional bank news) CEOs are getting some huge raises, despite still being on the government dole in the form of TARP (TARP news) bailout funds.

The board of Cincinnati-based Fifth Third, which has yet to repay 3.4 billion of TARP funds, decided to raise the compensation of its CEO 56 percent to $5.2 million, though it could not pay a bonus because of bailout rules. The CEO’s salary more than doubled from $900,000 to $2.1 million in 2009; a portion included some stock that cannot yet be cashed out. KeyCorp also boosted the pay of its top dog. So did PNC, which has paid back its TARP funds. To be sure, all of these banks fared much better than in 2008 and 2007, when the CEOs took pay cuts. Shares of these banks have rebounded.

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