In 2013, it paid to be the boss of a bank.
The CEO of Wells Fargo, John Stumpf, received $19.3 million last year. That includes base pay, bonus, stock options and long-term incentive awards if Stumpf hits his targets.
Stumpf won the highest paid bank CEO prize, according to a study of regulatory filings by SNL Financial, but you don't have to be the head of a mega-size financial group to rake it in.
The men who run regional banks, including some you may not recognize, are compensated handsomely.
The head of a bank based in Akron, Ohio paid its CEO $16.4 million last year.
That was enough to make FirstMerit Corp. (FMER) CEO Pat Greig the fourth highest paid bank chief in America. FirstMerit is only the nation's 29th largest bank.
PacWest Bancorp's (PACW) Matthew Wagner received a windfall of $11.9 million, making him the eight highest paid bank CEO overall. However, much of Wagner's compensation was tied to stock awards that vested when PacWest acquired CapitalSource.
Overall, pay continues to rise for bank CEOs, according to SNL. The median CEO pay among the 617 bank in the study was $565,169. That's up 48% from 2012, when the median compensation was $381,322.
The pay cut came after JPMorgan reported a $6.2 billion loss from the so-called London Whale trade -- the massive bet on credit derivatives made by one of the bank's London units that went terribly wrong.
Highest paid bank CEOs 2013
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Bank stocks have been on a tear in 2012. Monday was no different, as shares of big banks pushed the broader market higher.
Bank of America (BAC), Citigroup (C), Goldman Sachs (GS) and Morgan Stanley (MS) all climbed more than 2%, while Wells Fargo (WFC) rallied more than 3%. AIG (AIG) shares were up after the company said it plans to sell MOREHibah Yousuf - Dec 17, 2012 12:59 PM ET
Wells Fargo posted a record profit of $4.9 billion for the third quarter as mortgage lending picked up, but weaker-than-expected revenue left investors disappointed.
The nation's largest mortgage lender said it originated $139 billion of mortgages during the third quarter, up 6% from a year earlier, as record low interest rates drove homeowners to refinance. But the low rates also weighed on MOREHibah Yousuf - Oct 12, 2012 5:40 PM ET
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Paul R. La Monica. Other than Time Warner, the parent of CNNMoney, and Abbott Laboratories, La Monica does not own positions in any individual stocks.
It's been a great year for bank stocks. The KBW Bank Index (BKX) has MOREPaul R. La Monica - Oct 11, 2012 12:29 PM ET
Banks have had their share of bad publicity recently, but investors continue to give them the benefit of the doubt.
Standard Chartered (SCBFF) is a prime example.
The British bank's stock has recouped nearly all of the losses sustained earlier this month, when the bank was accused of laundering money for Iran.
U.S.-listed shares plunged to a low of $18.65 on Aug. 7, one day after banking regulators in New York threatened to MOREBen Rooney - Aug 24, 2012 7:04 AM ET
Paychecks for executives and top employees at the world's largest financial institutions are expected to get only a little bit bigger in 2012.
Compensation at the big banks will remain far below the highs of 2007, MOREMaureen Farrell - Aug 17, 2012 11:21 AM ET
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