Underpaid CEO?

The Wall Street Journal headline blares “Disney CEO Iger’s Bonus, Salary Total $17 Million” (in the print edition). To most of us, that’s an unbelievable amount of money, and no doubt many readers felt their blood pressure–and their populist anger–rising.

What the story didn’t quite say, though, was how much money Bob Iger made for Disney shareholders since he took over in October 2005. It did note that the company’s stock price has risen 43 percent in that time. So in the 15 months that Iger’s been in charge, shareholders have made some $23 billion. They probably figure $17 million is a fair reward to the CEO who played a major role in that gain.