By Saqib Iqbal Ahmed
NEW YORK (Reuters) - BlackRock Inc, the world's largest asset manager, cut total compensation for Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Larry Fink by 4.3% in 2018, according to a filing on Friday.
Fink was awarded $26.5 million in compensation last year, compared with $27.7 million in 2017, based on a calculation of his pay in line with U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission guidelines.
Going by a set of calculations BlackRock prefers, Fink's total compensation for the year fell 14% to $24 million. The figures differ because BlackRock reports some incentive pay in a different year.
"BlackRock’s Board of Directors and I both believe that the performance of our stock price should be a factor in determining the compensation of our senior executives," Fink, who is often quoted for his views on the markets and corporate governance and has been listed among the world's best CEOs by the newspaper Barron's, said in the filing.
BlackRock's stock slid 23.5% in price during 2018, its worst performance since 2008, as a severe bout of volatility buffeted financial markets. That compares with a 27.3% fall for a Thomson Reuters index that includes more than a dozen of BlackRock's industry rivals in the United States.
The shares hit a six-month high of $457.33 on Friday.
Fink's pay is among the highest in investment management globally as well as among U.S. financial firms, according to Thomson Reuters data. In the past the company's pay to executive officers has drawn criticism from proxy adviser Glass Lewis & Co LLC.
The company's president, Rob Kapito, was paid about $20.8 million in 2018, a decrease of 5.2% from the prior year, according to the calculations based on regulatory guidelines. Kapito and Fink were among BlackRock's founders in 1988.
Earlier this month, New York-based BlackRock made changes to its senior leadership ranks aimed at winning more business from top institutional clients and boosting growth of its alternative investing business.
The company is set to report first-quarter results on April 16.
(Reporting by Saqib Iqbal Ahmed; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Dan Grebler)