CEO Payday Draws S.C. Governor's Ire
South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford has asked federal authorities to investigate a more than $12 million payday for a bank CEO in his state, ahead of the company's application for assistance through the government's bailout program.
Sanford, a Republican, penned a letter to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson asking him to review the case of The South Financial Group (TSFG) CEO Mack Whittle, who suddenly moved up the date of his retirement shortly after the bank announced it would seek federal funds under the Troubled Assets Relief Program, or TARP, passed by Congress last month. Banks agreeing to preferred equity investments from the program subject themselves to certain restrictions on executive compensation.
TheStreet.com on Oct. 29 called attention to Whittle's suspiciously-timed golden parachute, which was soon after picked up by local and national media.
"I applaud the fact that you have placed limitations on executive compensation for those receiving federal money, but you need to be aware of how those limitations are being circumvented," Sanford writes in his letter to Paulson, dated Nov. 7.Whittle had originally planned to retire by the end of 2008, but that would have allowed bank regulators to review his generous pay package, which some reports put at as high as $18 million. In 2006, SNL Financial named Whittle one of America's most overcompensated bank executives. John C.B. Smith, chairman of the South Financial's board of directors, said in a statement issued Tuesday morning that Whittle's retirement date was moved up after "the management transition has progressed."
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.
- Real Money + Doug Kass + 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV