Skip to main content

Thursday,Feb.28/08. CIBC's Annual meeting of shareholders at the Fairmont Royal York. President and CEO of CIBC, Gerry McCaughey during a presser after the AGM. Picture taken on Feb.28/08 Photo by Tibor KolleyTibor Kolley/The Globe and Mail

The head of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce received a 7 per cent raise in 2011, a year in which the bank continued to strip risk out of its operations and began to build on its wealth management business.

Chief executive officer Gerry McCaughey made $10.6-million in total compensation in 2011, up from $9.91-million a year earlier.

That included a base salary of $1.5-million, $8.51-million in shares, options and bonuses, and $591,000 in pension costs. The numbers were contained in regulatory filings made public on Thursday.

In July, 2011, CIBC purchased a 41 per cent equity interest in American Century Investments, a U.S. asset management company, for $848-million (U.S.) as it looks to expand its wealth management capabilities. But the bank's primary strategy under Mr. McCaughey has been to pare back risk at CIBC after the bank was hit hard a few years ago by the subprime mortgage crisis in the U.S.

Richard Nesbitt, head of CIBC's capital markets division, was the second-highest paid executive at the bank, with $7.89-million in total compensation, up 13 per cent from the previous year.

David Williamson, head of retail and business banking, made $3.58-million, which was down about 3 per cent. Chief administrative officer and general counsel Mike Capatides made $3.39-million, up about 6 per cent. Chief financial officer Kevin Glass made $1.89-million in his first year in that role.

CIBC is the last of the country's six major banks to issue its proxy circular.

National Bank of Canada CEO Louis Vachon recorded the largest compensation increase of the group, climbing 48 per cent to $8.47-million, driven in part by a jump in pension funding during the year.

Over all, compensation across the sector was a mix this year – with slight increases or declines – compared to previous years when bank executives received hefty raises across the board.

Bank of Montreal paid its CEO Bill Downe $11.4-million in total compensation, up 12 per cent from the previous year. Bank of Nova Scotia CEO Rick Waugh took home $10.62-million, a drop of slightly less than 1 per cent.

Meanwhile, Toronto-Dominion Bank CEO Ed Clark had total compensation of $11.38-million, roughly the same as in 2010, while Royal Bank of Canada CEO Gord Nixon saw his total compensation drop 6 per cent in 2011, to $11.17-million.

Editor's note: An earlier online version of this story gave an incorrect figure for pension costs in Mr. McCaughey's compensation package. This online version has been corrected.