The 30 best-paid executives at Canada's big banks did just fine in 2014, hauling in a combined $190-million, after you factor in base salaries, cash bonuses, share-based awards and pension adjustments. That marks an increase of 16 per cent over 2013.
True, some asterisks are called for. Four of the six chief executives were newly promoted, and along with the corner office, each received a pay-bump — generally a big one. Then again, their compensation usually paled next to their longer-serving predecessors.
Do they deserve it? Canadian banks have outperformed the S&P/TSX Composite index over the past five years, after factoring in dividends. But this year may be a different story. In 2015, bank stocks have slumped 4.4 per cent, trailing the TSX by more than 7 percentage points.
Some overall impressions on compensation:
Royal Bank of Canada is the bank with the best pay, with a total of $43.9-million shared by the top five executives. At the bottom of the compensation list there is a tie between National Bank of Canada and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, both at $26.5-million. Perhaps bank size explains the difference.
The bank with biggest change from 2013: RBC, up 35 per cent (though the increase shrinks to 15.7 per cent if you ignore its chief executive's pension value adjustment; neither number accounts for one executive who was new in 2014).
The bank with smallest change from 2013: Toronto-Dominion Bank, up just 4.3 per cent.
Here's a rundown of who made what, in order, from the best-paid executive.