Stifel Bumps CEO Pay 15% to $11.5 Million
Stifel Financial Corp.’s chairman and chief executive officer saw his payout for 2020 increase 15% to $11.5 million in the pandemic year as the company raised compensation for most of its top executives.
Kruszewski, 62, whose cash bonus of $5,450,000 comprised 47.4% of his 2020 compensation package, also received $3,750,000 in restricted stock and debt and $2 million of performance-based deferred shares, the filing said.
The CEO-to-worker pay ratio was 105 to 1, according to the filing, which also said the company had a total of 8,714 employees in the U.S. and U.K. at the end of 2020.
Stifel’s wealth management unit, which comprised 54% of the company’s net revenue and 84% of its profit in the fourth quarter of 2020, notched its second-best earnings quarter, the company said in January. Revenue rose 4% to $575 million from $552 million a year ago, while advisor headcount had climbed 2.6% year-over-year to 2,280.
Kruszewski’s pay bump came as other regional banks and large brokerage firms cut pay for their top executives in light of the pandemic’s effect on performance.
One of Stifel’s largest ‘regional’ competitors, Raymond James Financial, slashed pay for its top executives, including a 17% pay cut for its CEO, Paul Reilly, citing a decline in net income and pandemic-related economic uncertainty. At LPL Financial, CEO Dan Arnold’s compensation took a lesser blow of 5.4%, as the pandemic weighed down the independent broker-dealer’s earnings.
Focus Financial Partners executives including CEO Rudy Adolf also saw 16%-plus declines in their compensation last year as the RIA acquirer missed growth targets in light of the pandemic.
Of Stifel’s four other named executives–Jim Zemlyak, head of global wealth management; Victor Nesi, director of the institutional group; Thomas Michaud, president and CEO of Stifel-owned investment bank Keefe, Bruyette & Woods and Jim Marischen, chief financial officer–three also saw pay increases.
Zemlyak received a 15.3% increase in total compensation to $6.8 million, while Nesi and Marischen received 15.9% increases to $8 million and $2 million, respectively. Michaud received $4.5 million, a 1.2% decrease, the filing said.
Stifel’s compensation committee had determined that, for 2020, compensation for Zemlyak, Nesi and Marischen “should be increased in line with our overall performance” and that Michaud’s “should be in line with the Institutional Group and with KBW performance,” according to the filing.