More detail on executive pay
Their latest move is a proposal to overhaul and tighten the requirements for disclosure of executive pay. In the wake of the Enron and New York Stock Exchange scandals in which bloated pay packages became a controversial issue, the SEC’s new chairman, Christopher Cox, wants to limit companies’ ability to conceal the value of perks and option packages.
The New York Times said, “The proposal would for the first time require public companies to provide a figure of total compensation, including significant perks, stock options and retirement benefits for the chief executive, the chief financial officer and three other top-paid officers, as well as all directors.”
The changes will be approved this year, for implementation in the 2007 proxy season. Analysts doubt that executive pay will decline much after the changes are made, because while stockholders may be outraged, there’s not really much they can do about it.
On the other hand, any move to make the impenetrable prose of proxy statements a little more clear is a boon to prospect researchers. So thank you, Mr. Cox!