Looks like Elizabeth MacDonald needed to be a little more patient when reporting on General Motors' CEO Mary Barra's financial situation. Last week, news quickly spread that Barra would be making 52 percent less in compensation than her predecessor Dan Akerson, thanks to this Fox Business report. But it looks like the wildfire was a result of lack of attention to detail.
MacDonald's report used numbers from "GM's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission." However, when MacDonald asked GM to comment, this was was she heard back: “What you’re a seeing now are two aspects of Mary’s compensation in 2014” and that “we won’t know until shareholders vote this June on Mary’s long-term incentive compensation." That was a response as to whether or not Barra's pay would increase.
MacDonald reported that Barra would be making $4.4 million ($1.6 million base salary) in 2014, in comparison to the $4.94 million that she made as senior vice president of global product development and the $9 million ($1.7 million base salary) her predecessor Dan Akerson made in 2013. But as we pointed out, she reported that basically on assumptions, after GM said that the final piece of her compensation hadn't been decided yet.
MacDonald's questioning was rooted in the fact that the other $7.3 million of Akerson's money came in short-term incentive pay, as the company had moved away from long-term incentives. However, It's still speculation, whichever way you paint it.
Finally, because this story blew up and was making GM look horrible, the company has finally announced the total compensation ahead of time: Mary Barra will be making a total of $14.4 million in compensation in 2014. $1.6 million will be base salary, $2.8 million will be short-term incentives and a little more than $10 million will long-term incentives, as long as the proposal is approved in the April shareholders meeting.
That means she'll be making 60 percent MORE than Dan Akerson. The increase is partially thanks to no longer having to deal with restrictions from the U.S. Treasury, but is also the result of 33 years of excellent and dedicated work from Barra.
[via Phil LeBeau]