- Associated Press - Sunday, June 5, 2016

PHOENIX (AP) - Chief executive officers of companies headquartered in Arizona are coming off a year of record-breaking pay.

Median CEO compensation reached $2.63 million last year and broke the previous record of $2.58 million in 2014, reported the Arizona Republic (https://bit.ly/1XuIy6M).

Net income was positive for 31 out of 41 companies included in the newspaper’s analysis, though 24 had stock-market returns in the negative.

Over 100 senior managers earned $750,000 or more in 2015 compared with 93 in 2014.

CEOs and top managers earned significantly more than the $39,000 per-capita income in Arizona estimated by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Former Freeport-McMoRan executive chairman James Moffett topped the CEO pay list at $21.9 million. He agreed to resign from the post after the company lost $12.2 billion. He collected $16.1 million in severance.

Some companies that paid their CEOs the most declined to comment.

Stanford University recently conducted a survey on the topic.

“There is a clear sense among the American public that CEOs are taking home much more in compensation than they deserve,” said Professor David Larcker of the Stanford Graduate School of Business in a statement. “While we find that members of the public are not particularly knowledgeable about how much CEOs actually make in annual pay, there is a general sense of outrage fueled in part by the political environment.”

The Republic added four companies to its analysis, boosting pay data overall.

Some companies were removed because of stock market worth or capitalization falling below $100 million.

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Information from: The Arizona Republic, https://www.azcentral.com

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