John Mack’s new contract with Morgan Stanley…

May 11, 2009

Tucked into the 10-Q that Morgan Stanley (MS) filed on Thursday was a revised employment agreeement for Chairman and CEO John Mack.

Given that Mack’s contract was last “freshened up” over three years ago — when TARP had a totally different meaning — we thought it would be worth taking a closer look. Perhaps the oddest thing about the new agreement is that the “effective date” of the contract — June 30, 2005 — hasn’t been updated, which means that come next June, the original five-year contract expires. And then there’s the fact while this agreement is dated Dec. 18, 2008, it wasn’t filed until now, when it easily could have been filed in the K. The other odd thing is that TARP is only mentioned in passing.

One of the biggest differences between the two contracts is that the clause in the contract that guarantees Mack annual compensation of $25 million and notes that the salary should not be less than the Chief Executives of Goldman (GS), Bear Stearns, Merrill Lynch, and Lehman, has been deleted. Talk about last man standing! It also notes that a special grant of 500,000 restricted shares “in no event be considered part of the executive’s total compensation”.

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