BMO head made 4.6% more in 2016

By Staff | March 13, 2017 | Last updated on March 13, 2017
2 min read

BMO CEO William Downe made $10.6 million in 2016 in total compensation, almost 5% more than in 2015.

While his salary remained the same at US$1.5 million, the rising U.S. dollar meant his CAD salary increased 5.6% on currency strength alone. To offset that impact, the bank’s proxy circular explains, “the [Compensation] Committee made a reduction to his cash incentive.” Nonetheless, his total direct compensation was 1.2% higher than the $10.5 million target.

The board attributed this raise to record financial performance: “BMO’s one-year average total shareholder return was 17.0%, outperforming our Canadian bank peer group average and the S&P/TSX Composite Index, and dividends paid were $3.36 per share, up 5% from 2015,” the circular says.

The board also notes that Downe “is the most experienced CEO among the Canadian banks.” Indeed, Downe has been with BMO since 1983; he reached his lifetime pension cap of US$1 million in 2012, so he accrued no pension benefits this year.

Read: RBC head made 5.1% more in 2016

Downe’s direct compensation target for 2017 remains at $10.5 million.

All other top BMO executives made more in 2016.

  • Thomas E. Flynn, CFO, made $3.6 million in 2016, up from $3.3 million in 2015.
  • Frank J. Techar, COO, BMO Financial Group, made $6.6 million in 2016, up from $5.7 million in 2016.
  • Darryl White, group head, BMO Capital Markets, made $8.2 million in 2016, up from $6.4 million in 2015.
  • Jean-Michel Arès, chief technology and operations officer, BMO Financial Group, made $6.4 million in 2016, up from nearly $6 million in 2015.

Read: Scotiabank CEO earned 8% more in 2016

Shareholder proposals and gender diversity

BMO received two shareholder proposals in 2016 — one on withdrawing from tax havens and the other on preparing for the “uberization” of financial services — but neither are going to a shareholder vote.

In 2016, BMO reached a proportion of 40% women in senior leadership roles, a goal it had set in 2012. As of October 31, 2016, four out of 16 executive officer positions, as well as the position of chief auditor, were held by women. staff


The staff of have been covering news for financial advisors since 1998.