Lazard reported 2007 profits of $122.6 million today, and gave CEO Bruce Wasserstein a bonus of $36.2 million for the year – on top of a restricted-stock grant of $96.3 million. How did Lazard’s share price perform over the course of 2007? Well, it started the year at $47.33, and ended the year at $40.68 – a fall of 14%. It’s now lower still, at $37.39.
Think about that.
The company makes a profit of $122 million, and the CEO’s bonus (not including stocks) is one-quarter of that. Despite the fact that the stockholders’ value in the company dropped 14%.
When Edwards campaigned about corporate greed and Two Americans, this is what he was talking about.