May 20, 2022
Goldman Sachs office

A report by Glass Lewis on Goldman Sachs’ annual shareholder meeting has criticized the company’s recent executive pay package.

Glass Lewis recommended that shareholders vote against the $30 million one-time bonus given to Chief Operating Officer John Waldron and Chief Financial Officer David Solomon. The report stated that Goldman had claimed the compensation would drive long-term shareholder value creation, but that the pay packages were unlikely to keep leadership stable for the next five years. The multi-million dollar bonuses will be paid in October 2026.

While the company has said that the new bonuses are designed to boost retention and respond to the war for talent, the firm’s new pay package reportedly included an even more lucrative perk. This bonus came just months after Goldman was forced to dock Solomon’s pay because of his involvement in the 1MDB corruption scandal. Glass Lewis also pointed out that the new bonus was subject to time-based and performance vesting conditions. Solomon’s one-off executive bonus is valued at about US$30 million and will be paid out in five years.

According to Reuters, Glass Lewis has recommended that shareholders vote against the special bonuses given to Goldman Sachs executives. The bonuses are set to be put to advisory votes at the company’s annual general meeting on April 28. Glass Lewis also pointed out structural problems with the bonuses. Reuters contacted Goldman Sachs for comment but the company did not reply. It declined to comment on the report.

A recent Glass Lewis report suggests that shareholders vote against Goldman Sachs’ one-time executive bonus on April 28. Although the vote is advisory, it can highlight investor discontent about executive pay packages. Honeywell and Coca-Cola declined to comment on the report. Goldman declined to comment on the recommendation. Bloomberg reported that Goldman did not respond to a request for comment.

The proposal comes amid ongoing investor blowback over the bank’s spending plans. JPMorgan Chase, another major investment bank, has been at the center of investor furor over its executives’ compensation. A special award of stock options granted to Jamie Dimon last year was estimated to be worth $49 million. However, the company is considering a payout for its top executives despite the risks.