Citi CEO to Earn $1 as Other Execs Pull Down Millions

Citigroup Chief Executive Vikram Pandit will be paid a dollar again this year for 12 months of work, while other top executives at the bank are set to earn millions.

Pandit, who stepped into the role in late 2007, has declined a bonus since the financial crisis, and has pledged to keep his salary at $1 a year until the bank is profitable again. While Citi has made money for the last two quarters, Pandit declined the board's offer to increase his salary and bonus for 2010.

In a statement, Citigroup Chairman Dick Parsons said the board is pleased with the progress that management is making in returning the bank to profitability. He called Pandit's decision to turn down a salary increase and bonus "admirable" but added that "beginning in 2011, the board intends to compensate Vikram commensurate with the job of CEO of Citi."

The bank's other top 25 executives stand to make much more than their boss. At year's end the board's compensation committee will give them salarized stock grants.

According to CNBC's calculations, those grants, along with cash salaries of $500,000 and expected bonuses that can be up to 50 percent of the total value of an executive's salarized stock grants and cash salary, puts total compensation for the bank's five named executives in a range of between $6,999,996 for CFO John Gerspach to $14,500,000 for John Havens, the CEO of Citi's Institutional Clients Group.

According to an SEC filing, the bank's five named executives are Gerspach; Vice Chairman Ned Kelly; Havens; Manuel Medina-Mora, CEO of Consumer Banking For the Americas; and Alberto Verme, CEO of Europe, Middle East and Africa.

Pay granted to the named executives could end up being much higher or lower, depending on Citi's share price when they cash in those shares.

Many expect that once the government's stock sale is complete, Citi's shares, down 91 percent over the last three years, are poised for a rebound.

In keeping with a structure endorsed by the former Special Master for Executive Compensation, Kenneth Feinberg, Citi's 2010 pay plan is light on cash salary and heavy on salarized stock, or stock subject to certain vesting conditions.

Citi repaid $20 billion in TARPfunds and is no longer required to follow the guidelines of the Special Master's office.

However, because the government still owns a stake in the company (last estimated to be at 18 percent), Citi is subject to certain restrictions on incentive pay under the Dodd-Frank Act.

Under the new financial regulations incentive, neither pay nor bonuses can be more than a third of an executive's total compensation. That limit will likely not apply next year, because the government is expected to complete the sale of its Citi holdings by the end of 2010.