Merck & Co., Inc. CEO Pay Rises but Still Nicked by Research Setbacks

Published: Apr 23, 2013

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Merck & Co.'s ( MRK ) leader saw a 16% increase in the value of his total compensation for 2012, but portions of his and other executives' pay were reined in because of the drug maker's research setbacks and below-average shareholder returns. Merck Chief Executive Kenneth C. Frazier's total pay package for 2012 was $15.5 million, versus $13.3 million for 2011, fueled by an increase in the value of his pension and deferred compensation, as well as higher stock and option awards. But Mr. Frazier's base salary remained unchanged at $1.5 million because Merck's board wanted to ensure that a substantial majority of his compensation was variable and tied to longer-term operating and stock price performance, according to a proxy statement filed this week with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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