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Goldman Sachs gives Blankfein US$7m long-term incentive

[NEW YORK] Goldman Sachs Group Inc awarded Chief Executive Officer Lloyd Blankfein a US$7 million bonus to be paid out over eight years if the firm meets certain targets, bringing his total compensation for last year to $30 million.

Mr Blankfein, 61, can receive more or less of the long-term incentive award based on whether the firm achieves return-on- equity and book-value targets, the New York-based firm said Friday in a filing. His package includes US$14.7 million in restricted shares, a US$6.3 million cash bonus and a US$2 million salary.

He becomes the highest-paid CEO among those at the largest US lenders for the fourth straight year, despite overseeing a 28 per cent decline in net income. The firm's ROE was 7.4 per cent last year, a 34 per cent decline from 2014 after the bank paid more than US$5 billion to settle a probe into mortgage-backed securities.

Mr Blankfein's total pay package for 2015 fell from US$31 million a year earlier. JPMorgan Chase & Co gave CEO Jamie Dimon a 35 per cent pay raise to US$27 million for 2015, while Wells Fargo & Co awarded John Stumpf US$19.3 million for a fourth straight year. Citigroup Inc trimmed Mike Corbat's compensation 27 per cent to US$16.5 million. Bank of America Corp's Brian Moynihan got US$16 million.

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Details of Mr Blankfein's pay were contained in the bank's proxy statement for its annual shareholders' meeting, which will be held May 20 in Jersey City, New Jersey. James Johnson, the former head of Fannie Mae and the longest serving member of Goldman Sachs's board, leads the compensation committee.

President Gary Cohn, Chief Financial Officer Harvey Schwartz and Vice Chairman Michael Sherwood were granted US$6.7 million long-term awards, bringing their total pay packages to US$27.7 million each. Vice Chairman Mark Schwartz received US$22 million in total pay, including a US$4 million incentive.

Top executives also received payouts from funds managed by the firm during the year, including profits, return of money invested and their portion of the funds' management fees, known as overrides. Including those overrides, the payouts during 2015 totaled about US$25.8 million for Blankfein, US$10.1 million for Cohn, and US$5.06 million for Harvey Schwartz.

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