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Does Amgen Inc.'s (NASDAQ:AMGN) CEO Salary Compare Well With Others?

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Bob Bradway became the CEO of Amgen Inc. (NASDAQ:AMGN) in 2012. This analysis aims first to contrast CEO compensation with other large companies. Next, we'll consider growth that the business demonstrates. And finally we will reflect on how common stockholders have fared in the last few years, as a secondary measure of performance. The aim of all this is to consider the appropriateness of CEO pay levels.

View our latest analysis for Amgen

How Does Bob Bradway's Compensation Compare With Similar Sized Companies?

According to our data, Amgen Inc. has a market capitalization of US$125b, and paid its CEO total annual compensation worth US$19m over the year to December 2018. While this analysis focuses on total compensation, it's worth noting the salary is lower, valued at US$1.6m. We further remind readers that the CEO may face performance requirements to receive the non-salary part of the total compensation. We looked at a group of companies with market capitalizations over US$8.0b and the median CEO total compensation was US$11m. (We took a wide range because the CEOs of massive companies tend to be paid similar amounts - even though some are quite a bit bigger than others).

As you can see, Bob Bradway is paid more than the median CEO pay at large companies, in the same market. However, this does not necessarily mean Amgen Inc. is paying too much. We can get a better idea of how generous the pay is by looking at the performance of the underlying business.

The graphic below shows how CEO compensation at Amgen has changed from year to year.

NasdaqGS:AMGN CEO Compensation, October 30th 2019
NasdaqGS:AMGN CEO Compensation, October 30th 2019

Is Amgen Inc. Growing?

Over the last three years Amgen Inc. has shrunk its earnings per share by an average of 1.6% per year (measured with a line of best fit). It achieved revenue growth of 1.6% over the last year.

In the last three years the company has failed to grow earnings per share. The modest increase in revenue in the last year isn't enough to make me overlook the disappointing change in earnings per share. So given this relatively weak performance, shareholders would probably not want to see high compensation for the CEO. Shareholders might be interested in this free visualization of analyst forecasts.

Has Amgen Inc. Been A Good Investment?

Most shareholders would probably be pleased with Amgen Inc. for providing a total return of 62% over three years. This strong performance might mean some shareholders don't mind if the CEO were to be paid more than is normal for a company of its size.

In Summary...

We compared the total CEO remuneration paid by Amgen Inc., and compared it to remuneration at a group of other large companies. We found that it pays well over the median amount paid in the benchmark group.

Neither earnings per share nor revenue have been growing sufficiently to impress us, over the last three years. But clearly there are some positives, because investors have done well over the same time frame. So on this analysis we'd stop short of criticizing the level of CEO compensation. Whatever your view on compensation, you might want to check if insiders are buying or selling Amgen shares (free trial).

Arguably, business quality is much more important than CEO compensation levels. So check out this free list of interesting companies, that have HIGH return on equity and low debt.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.