The Wall Street Journal has just published a list of the highest-paid CEOs in the US over the last decade, and that got us thinking.
First, though, some stuff from the Journal.
The newspaper analyzed the total comp of CEOs in terms of salary, bonuses, perks, and realized gains on stock and options from 2000 through 2009, and here's the top 5:
1. Larry Ellison, Oracle - $1.835bn
2. Barry Diller, Interactive Corp / Expedia.com - $1.142bn
3. Ray Irani, Occidental Petroleum - $857.1m
4. Steve Jobs, Apple - $748.8m
5. Richard Fairbank, Capital One Financial - $568.5m
Interestingly, former Lehman Brothers CEO Richard Fuld comes in at number 11 with a cool $456.70m.
Blackstone CEO Stephen Schwarzman raked in a staggering $702,440,573 in 2008, around $700m of which was from the vested portion of his stock - 25% of his holding - sold when the company undertook an IPO that year.
In terms of exit or retirement packages, research group Corporate Library has these guys as their top 5:
1. Lee Raymond, Exxon Mobil - $351m (2006)
2. Hank McKinnell, Pfizer Inc. - $213m (2006)
3. Robert Nardell, Home Depot - $210m (2007)
4. James Kilts, Gillette - $165m (2005)
5. Stan O'Neal, Merrill Lynch - $161.5m (2007)
Coming in at number 9 is former Morgan Stanley CEO Philip Purcell on $94m (2005).
And as for hedge fund managers, according to Institutional Investor's AR Absolute Return - Alpha's latest comp list, here's the top 5 industry earners for 2009:
1. David Tepper, Appalossa Management - $4bn
2. George Soros, $3.3bn
3. Jamie Simons, Renaissance Technologies - $2.5bn
4. John Paulson, Paulson & Co - $2.3bn
5. Steve Cohen, SAC Capital - $1.4bn
John Paulson also enjoyed a decent year in 2007, when he is said to have scooped a cool $4bn (his firm made $15bn that year, including $1.25bn in one single morning!).
Finally, the three richest people in the world according to the latest Forbes annual rankings are:
1. Carlos Slim, Mexico - $53.5bn
2. Bill Gates, US - $53.0bn
3. Warren Buffett, US - $47.0bn