Jamie Dimon can do no wrong — at least in the eyes of his board.
Even though JPMorgan Chase handed the government more than $20 billion to settle an array of charges in 2013, the board of directors still raised the chief executive’s pay by 74 percent, according to a regulatory filing released Friday.
The board voted to award Dimon $18.5 million in restricted stock that will vest over the next three years. Coupled with his base salary of $1.5 million, which remained unchanged from the previous year, his total compensation last year was $20 million.
In November, JPMorgan agreed to pay the government $13 billion to resolve allegations that the bank knowingly sold faulty mortgage securities that contributed to the financial crisis. The settlement, and the slew of others that proceeded it, brought JPMorgan closer to putting to rest its mountain of legal woes. And for that, the board said it was grateful.
One of the factors the board took into account in determining Dimon’s compensation was the “steps the company has taken to resolve” the “regulatory issues the company has faced,” according to the filing.
— Danielle Douglas
Income inequality, a new paper argues, is not only bad for those at the bottom. It is also bad for economic growth as a whole and a major reason why the recovery from the Great Recession has been so weak.
The paper by Barry Z. Cynamon and Steven M. Fazzari, economists working with the Weidenbaum Center on the Economy, Government and Public Policy at Washington University in St. Louis, says that stagnant income for the “bottom 95 percent” of wage earners makes it impossible for them to consume as they did in the years before the downturn.
Consumer spending, which drives 70 percent of the U.S. economy, dropped sharply during the recession. And while it has picked back up in the years since for the top 5 percent of wage earners — which the Census Bureau defines as households making more than $166,000 a year — “there is no evidence of a recovery whatsoever for the bottom 95 percent,” Fazzari said.
— Michael A. Fletcher
● The price of natural gas soared nearly 10 percent, jumping 45 cents to reach $5.18 per 1,000 cubic feet, the highest close since June 2010. The frigid temperatures across much of the Midwest and Northeast have homeowners and businesses cranking up the heat. At the same, the recent combination of snow, ice and cold temperatures has impeded some natural gas production.
● Children ages 2 to 4 spend the most time with educational media, averaging one hour and 16 minutes a day viewing television or using online programs, according to a study released by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center. That average dropped to 50 minutes a day for 5- to 7-year-olds and to 42 minutes a day for 8- to 10-year-olds, the report said.
● Coca-Cola said laptop computers stolen from its Atlanta headquarters held the personal information of up to 74,000 people. The Wall Street Journal reported the theft, citing a memo sent to Coca-Cola’s U.S. and Canadian employees. The personal information was mostly that of employees or former employees of Coca-Cola. The company has recovered the laptops, and spokeswoman Ann Moore said Coca-
Cola has no indication that the information on the stolen computers was misused.
● Wal-Mart Stores is eliminating 2,300 workers at its Sam’s Club division as it reduces the ranks of middle managers. The layoffs, which cut 2 percent of the membership club’s employee count of about 116,000, mark the largest since 2010 when the Sam’s Club unit laid off 10,000 workers as it moved to outsource food demonstrations at its stores.
— From staff reports, news services
● Monday: New home sales data for December released at 10 a.m. Monday.