The insanity of CEO compensation in the lending industry continues even as many of those institutions have run out of money. WaMu is paying $20M to CEO Alan Fishman for 17 days on the job (my guess at the hourly calc – $20M/17 days/15 hour days). To be fair, I can only assume he worked long hours without a break for the past three weeks due to the dire situation of his employer.
According to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, WaMu threw a $7.5 million bonus at Fishman when it hired him on Sept. 8, and guaranteed him an immediate cash severence of $11.6 million â€” both of which he gets to keep.
He also was eligible for annual bonuses of up to 365 percent of his annual base pay â€” set at $1 million â€” to go with millions of shares of company stock.
Fishman does lose out on a big bonus that would have kicked in had he remained on the job through 2009.
I am not saying he shouldn’t be paid this salary if the contract was proper. I know the amount is ridiculous. But he’s not the bad guy here. He was courted heavily to come in and keep the lender from going under even though, in fairness, WaMu was out of business and simply didn’t know it. Who wouldn’t want to make that rate of pay?
Incidentally, this was the largest US banking failure in history.
What I do have a problem is the board and their accountability to its shareholders. Remember their previous CEO?
Personal feelings: While I feel sorry for the hard working people who lost their jobs at WaMu who didn’t deserve to, there is no love loss within the appraisal industry from the way WaMu sandbagged their appraisers a few years ago.
Here’s a sampling of the anger they caused: