* To cut CEO bonus, director compensation
* Former CEOs to be ineligible for board
* Company sets maximum age of 68 for CEOs
* Analysts say moves are positive for the stock
April 29 Occidental Petroleum Corp, the
fourth-largest U.S. oil company, said Chief Executive Steve
Chazen would continue in his role through 2014 with the full
support of the board, reducing uncertainty surrounding its CEO
The Wall Street Journal said in March there was pressure
from Chairman and former CEO Ray Irani for Chazen to leave the
post immediately, but the company had denied any fight at the
On Monday, Occidental announced cuts in director and CEO
compensation among a range of governance measures that also
included an upper age limit of 68 for CEOs to retire. Chazen,
66, said the measures were consistent with his personal plans.
Occidental also said former CEOs would not be eligible to
serve on the board "going forward". It did not specify whether
this rule would apply to 78-year-old Irani, who has said that he
plans to retire as chairman at the end of 2014.
Occidental said in mid-February it was seeking a replacement
for Chazen, who joined the company in 1994 and took over as CEO
Morningstar analyst Allen Good called the latest move a
positive for the stock as it cleared a lot of uncertainty around
the CEO's tenure.
"Giving him (Chazen) more time to execute on his plans
certainly should reassure investors at this point," Good said.
Occidental's shares rose 1 percent to $87.68 in morning
trading on the New York Stock Exchange.
Analysts at Simmons & Co said the announcement should help
resolve the "overhang" on Occidental's shares.
Occidental also said the discretionary portion of the CEO's
bonus would be reduced to "no more than 20 percent" from 40
percent, and that the company's financial performance would be
used to evaluate his performance.
The annual common stock grant to non-employee directors
would be reduced by at least 20 percent immediately and the
director-compensation program would be reviewed this year, the
Occidental said Chazen himself had proposed that he would
not be eligible for any bonus or earnings-based pay during his