While fund companies have resisted firing portfolio managers and top executives and have, in fact, rewarded them as well as their directors with equal if not slightly higher salaries (see MFMN 4/14/03), the bear market is beginning to catch up with some.

As profit growth stalled at most publicly traded asset-management firms in 2001, declining by as much as 72% in the case of Janus, companies decreased executive pay, Dow Jones Newswires reports.

Excluding stock options and other compensation, many mutual fund executives saw their total compensation packages of salary and bonuses decrease. Only companies with a concentration on fixed income, which has held up well during the market, bucked the trend.

Janus took away bonuses for many of its executives, pushing down compensation for many by as much as 28%. Alliance Capital Management, which had rewarded its CEO and COO with bonuses of $6 million apiece in 2001, brought those hefty sums down 67% to $2 million last year.

BlackRock decreased its CEO’s bonus 11%, to $8 million, in 2002, and reduced its president’s bonus 13%, to $4.6 million. Eaton Vance cut its CEO’s bonus by 26%, to $2.3 million. T. Rowe Price merely shaved its chairman and president’s bonus by $100,000 last year, rewarding him with $1.6 million.

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