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Opinion, commentary, and analysis on everything that makes the U.S. housing economy tick -- not to mention the ghosts in the machine, too. Written by HW's team of editors and reporters each business day.

New Freddie CEO salary overshoots FHFA target

May 14, 2012

The Federal Housing Finance Agency, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae’s conservator, said in March that it set a target salary of $500,000 for incoming CEOs of the mortgage giants.

Incoming Freddie chief executive Donald Layton, the former E*Trade head and JPMorgan Chase [stock JPM][/stock] executive, will make an annual salary of $600,000, according to a Friday filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Back in March, the FHFA left open the possibility that “target” — wording used in a news release — could fluctuate. Acting Director Ed DeMarco, during a conference call at the time, said there might be circumstances that result in that $500,000 salary being higher or lower.

A Freddie Mac spokesman said he wasn’t familiar with discussions relating to Layton’s salary or who made the decision. But it did require the approval of the FHFA, he said.

Layton won’t receive any bonus payments — banned for all Fannie and Freddie execs by Congress — or deferred salary like other top officials.

Members of Congress have taken Fannie and Freddie to task on the salary issue, with some, including Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., and Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., balking at the $500,000 target.


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