• Switzerland's news in English

UBS reveals lofty bonuses despite losses

Malcolm Curtis · 15 Mar 2013, 08:44

Published: 15 Mar 2013 08:44 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

In a compensation report issued on Thursday, Switzerland’s largest bank said it paid out 70 million francs to executive committee members, around the same as the previous year when it raked in a net profit of 4.2 billion francs.

CEO Sergio Ermotti, received a salary and bonuses of 8.9 million francs, up from 6.35 million francs in 2011, a year in which he spent less than four months as chief executive.

The bank said its total bonus pool for senior managers and staff fell by 27 percent in 2012 to 2.5 billion francs from 2.7 billion francs the previous year.

However, the number of employees also dropped significantly over the period after UBS last year announced a multi-year plan to shed 10,000 jobs.

UBS Chairman Axel Weber defended the pay packages due to what he called a “positive performance” at the bank despite the red ink soaking the financial sheets.

“We have in 2012 set a new course for the future of the firm and made good progress in solving problems related to the past,” Weber was quoted as saying by the German-language SDA news agency.

Weber, who was appointed chairman in May 2012, received total compensation of more than 4.2 million francs, including shares valued at over two million francs.

In its compensation report, UBS said the bank’s underlying performance was better than the net loss posted, noting more than three billion francs in goodwill impairments, plus 1.4 billion francs in fines and costs relating to the Libor rate-fixing scandal.

The report also highlighted the fact the bank’s shares rose 28 percent over the year.

Meanwhile, pay to top executives, including Ermotti, included deferred bonuses that will only be paid if the bank meets certain targets.

The impact has not yet been felt on an initiative, passed by voters in Switzerland earlier this month, that will require binding votes by shareholders of Swiss companies on executive pay.

The initiative also bans golden parachutes and payments paid to lure executives to join a company.

The compensation report reveals that UBS offered co-head of its investment bank Andrea Orcel almost 25 million francs in deferred cash and shares to lure him away from Bank of America/Merrill last July.

The payment compensates for benefits forfeited by Orcel for leaving Bank of America, UBS said.

The deferred payments will be paid in installments this year, in 2014 and in 2015.

Such payments appear to be banned under the population initiative spearheaded by Schaffhausen businessman and independent senator Thomas Minder.

Malcolm Curtis (news@thelocal.ch)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

2013-03-18 12:24:34 by smeghead
they cause a finacial fiasco, then reward them selves for it. what's wrong with that?
answer please on a self Adresse orange
Today's headlines
Illegal immigrant dies after setting himself on fire
The victim was treated at University Hospital Zurich. Photo: University Hospital Zurich

The 45-year-old Tunisian was threatened with deportation.

Swiss government rejects call for second immigration vote
Photo: Justus Blumer/Christophe G

The Swiss government has rejected a popular initiative calling for a revote on plans to limit immigration.

Bern: companies should report salary inequality by law
File photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

The Swiss government wants to force small companies to examine their rates of pay every four years.

Husband in custody after Orbe body identified
File photo: Bas Leenders

The deceased is a 55-year-old woman who lived in the house with her husband.

Presented by MoneyPark
How to get a mortgage in Switzerland
Houses in Zürich. Photo: Pixabay.

Ready to buy? Here’s what you need to know as an expat about Swiss regulations, how to finance your purchase, and why you should use a broker.

Autumn in Switzerland: ten stunning Instagram photos
Photo: Swiss Tourism/Jan Geerk

Switzerland is beautiful in all seasons, but as these photos show, autumn is a special time in the alpine country.

Report: Swiss progress slows on gender equality
File photo: David Soulivet

Globally, it will take 170 years to achieve gender equality, according to the World Economic Forum.

Brothers go to court to stop suicide of sibling
File photo: Lisa Edmonds

Two men have filed a legal bid to prevent the Swiss assisted suicide association Exit from helping their older brother to kill himself.

Wawrinka snubs past form to reach Basel second round
Wawrinka beat local wildcard Marco Chiudinelli. Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

US Open champion Stan Wawrinka has reached the second round in Basel after going out in the first round for the past four years.

Villagers asked to help fund bridge renovations
The bridge links the two villages of Veltheim (pictured) and Holderbank. Photo: Lutz Fischer-Lamprecht

The crowdfunding campaign by the two communes is the first of its kind in Switzerland.

Photo: Unterirdisch Ueberleben
Inside Switzerland’s largest nuclear bunker – 40 years on
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Photo: The Local
Ticino firefighters rescue cow from swimming pool
Photo: Antoni Da Campo
Vegan wins battle to be accepted by Swiss army
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Ten Swiss ski resorts named most expensive in Europe
Photo: Randy Kashka
Swiss women will ‘work for free’ for the rest of year
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Montreux throws hat in Olympic rings
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Seven things you’ll miss about Switzerland if you leave
Photo: Richard Juilliard/AFP
Man makes Geneva airport bomb threat ‘for a joke’
Photo: AFP
Solar Impulse team reveals plans for unmanned plane
File photo: Martin Abegglen
Swiss to vote on passport rules for 3rd gen foreigners
Photo: AFP
Swiss wingsuit hotspot Lauterbrunnen won’t impose ban
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Six reasons Switzerland isn’t as boring as you might think
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Report: Switzerland one of world’s best places for girls
Photo: The Local
Thief returns Swiss cow bells worth thousands
File photo: Wikimedia Commons
One in three rapists isn’t locked up: statistics
Photo: activistin.ch
Tampon-tax protest turns Zurich fountains red
Photo: AFP
Geneva police to lift ban on bearded officers
Photo: Marcel Gillieron/AFP
Suicide chef’s restaurant keeps Michelin stars
Photo: Lara de Salis
11 things the Swiss get tired of hearing abroad
Photo:  Ivo Scholz/Swiss-image.ch
Survey: expats in Switzerland have money but few friends
Photo: AFP
Swiss press criticize Bern’s 'capitulation' on immigration
Photo: Jura Trois Lacs tourism
German ex-policeman is Swiss city’s new hermit
Photo: Dmitry A. Mottl
Ticino votes to favour local workers over foreigners
jobs available