First Niagara CEO Koelmel pay jumps 47% in 2009

John Koelmel, the president and CEO of First Niagara Financial Group, took home 47 percent more in 2009 than he had the year before. Koelmel, who is 57, earned a total of $2.52 million in 2009. This compares to $1.71 million in 2008. His compensation package included a salary of $691,346 a 15 percent increase from 2008 plus stock awards valued at $562,514, option awards totaling $262,497 and a cash bonus of $945,000 under the Buffalo-based company Pinnacle plan. The Pinnacle plan rewards executives when the company, which is parent to First Niagara Bank, meets certain financial goals. In 2008, Koelmel had received a Pinnacle bonus of $576,000. G. [Read the full article]

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First Niagara Financial Group Inc. executive John Koelmel’s total compensation rose nearly 50 percent last year due in part to additional stock awards and cash-incentive payments, according to documents filed Tuesday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The CEO of First Niagara earned $2.52 million in compensation in 2009, up 47.5 percent from 2008 when he earned $1.71 million, the filing shows. The package includes a base salary of $691,346, stock awards totaling $562,514 and cash-incentive payments totaling $945,000. The year before, stock awards given to Koelmel totaled $234,390 and cash-incentive payments totaled $576,000. Additionally, Koelmel received $65,261 in other compensation, which includes retirement savings plans, term-life insurance premiums, medical insurance, $20,770 in club dues and $10,800 for automobile expenses. First Niagara board chairman G. [Read the full article]

The Treasury Department has received $15.39 million from the sale of warrants it received from Washington Federal Inc. as part of the support it provided from the government’s $700 billion bailout program.

The Treasury said Wednesday that it sold 1.71 million warrants in an auction that took place the previous day. Warrants are financial instruments that allow the holder to buy stock in the future at a fixed price.

The auction for the Seattle-based bank followed one held last week in which the government raised a record $1.54 billion from the sale of warrants received from Bank of America.

The Treasury said that the Washington Federal warrants brought an auction price of $9.15 per warrant, above the minimum bid of $5 per warrant set by Treasury.

Under the terms of the auction, the owner of the warrants will have the right to purchase Washington Federal stock at a price of $17.57. [Read the full article]

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