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US pay czar to oversee pay practice at Citi

June 12, 2009 13:07 IST
In a bid to rein in exorbitant executive compensation, the US government has appointed a pay czar who will oversee pay practices at seven companies including Citigroup, which have received "extraordinary" Federal assistance.

The Obama administration has chosen Kenneth Feinberg as the pay czar, amid rising criticism over corporate compensation in the wake of the financial turmoil.

Feinberg, who is a reputed lawyer, would be overseeing the compensation structure at seven entities including Vikram Pandit-led Citi, which have been propped by the US government.

"Ken Feinberg is going to assume the role of special master that will allow him to review for soundness, appropriateness, and to limit risk relating to compensation packages for those companies that are either receiving extraordinary assistance or might in the future," White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said in a briefing on Wednesday.

The seven firms that would come under the jurisdiction of the pay czar are Citi, American International Group, Bank of America, General Motors, GMAC, Chrysler, and Chrysler Financial. The Federal government has already pumped in billions of dollars into these entities to help them tackle the raging economic turmoil.

The initiative would bring the compensation of Pandit - who got a total pay of about $38 million in 2008 - under the purview of the pay czar.

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