2010 pay for AIG's Benmosche valued at $8.4M

AP News
Posted: Mar 17, 2011 6:54 PM

AIG's CEO Robert Benmosche received compensation valued at $8.4 million in 2010, according to an Associated Press analysis of a regulatory filing.

In a securities filing Thursday, American International Group Inc. said Benmosche got a salary of $3 million and restricted stock awards worth $5.4 million. Benmosche, a former MetLife Inc. CEO who joined AIG in August of 2009, received compensation valued at $2.7 million that year.

AIG is subject to limits on executive pay because it is still 92 percent owned by the government. The insurance company nearly went under during the 2008 financial crisis and received a bailout package with a total value of $182 billion.

In AIG's case, the compensation rules cover the insurer's 100 highest-paid employees. Benmosche and other top executives do not receive a cash bonus and have vesting periods for the stock awards.

Benmosche's pay package also included $24,390 in perks, mainly for personal use of the company car.

Benmosche is credited with laying the groundwork for AIG to start repaying the government. In 2010, AIG raised more than $37 billion in cash and securities, primarily by selling two international life insurance divisions.

In February, AIG reported strong earnings of $11.2 billion for the fourth quarter.

The U.S. government is expected to start selling its shares of AIG starting in a few weeks.

AIG became a symbol of lax regulation and excess risk on Wall Street during the financial crisis that crested in late 2008. The company had written insurance on the value of hundreds of billions in mortgage investments held by financial institutions.

When the investments lost value, AIG could not afford to make good on its contracts. Finally, it had to take the government's help to stay out of bankruptcy.

The AP's executive pay calculation aims to isolate the value the company's board placed on the CEO's total compensation package. The figure includes salary, bonus, incentives, perks and the estimated value of stock options and awards.