Did Lloyd Blankfein Earn $100 Million in 2007?

There’s a bit of buzz today over Goldman Sachs’s 2007 executive pay packages. It’s all a bit confusing: do you include previous years’ stock grants? How do you account for options?

If you add up stock awards and options awards and cash payments from 2007 alone, Lloyd Blankfein got $68.5 million last year, while the top five executives between them made $305 million.

Blankfein’s been at Goldman a long time, so his old option grants are now vesting. If you ignore the option grants he got in 2007, but include the value of his stock that vested, you get $99.6 million – which allowed Reuters to run a headline saying "Goldman Sachs CEO gets $100 mln in pay, stock".

And if you simply add up the numbers in the summary compensation table from the annual proxy statement, you get a total of $322 million, which includes expenses that Goldman booked in 2007 for stock grants in previous years. Using that figure, a commenter at DealBook noted:

great, the Goldman Five’s compensation packages just surpassed a little bit over the FY07 free cash flow of The New York Times.

The NYT’s free cash flow in 2007 being $317 million.

In any case, all these numbers are out of date, because they’re based on a year-end stock valuation of about $215 per share. Today, Goldman’s trading at $160, which means that all of those stock awards are now worth about 25% less than the figures being reported. Not that anybody’s exactly crying rivers of sympathy for Blankfein & Co.

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