Morgan Stanley executives earn $10.5 million in post-election rally
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The logo of Morgan Stanley is seen at an office building in Zurich, Switzerland September 22, 2016. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo
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By Olivia Oran
(Reuters) - Senior Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) executives collectively earned about $10.5 million over the past week by exercising options and selling shares, with most of them profiting from an election-fueled rally in bank stocks, according to securities filings.
The executives made the sales after shares of Morgan Stanley, which traded as low as $22 in the last 12 months, reversed course to become the best performing of the six largest U.S. banks so far this year, closing Monday at $39.35.
Executives at other large U.S. banks have not made similar trades, even after U.S. bank stocks helped push the Dow to all-time highs after Republican president-elect Donald Trump's surprise victory.
Morgan Stanley Chief Executive James Gorman earned $2.94 million as part of a transaction last Friday, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday. Gorman sold 200,000 shares at a price of $37.70 and spent about $4.6 million to exercise 200,000 options at $22.98.
President Colm Kelleher netted $3.3 million in transactions on Thursday. He exercised 222,713 options at $22.98 and then sold 115,167 shares at $37.92 a piece and 64,127 shares at $38.71. Investment management head Dan Simkowitz also sold $2.3 million worth of stock on Thursday.
Chief Legal Officer Eric Grossman earned 475,206 by exercising options and selling stock on Friday.
Chief Financial Officer Jonathan Pruzan was the only one of the five executives to take profits before the election results. He sold $1.5 million worth of stock.
A Morgan Stanley spokesman declined to comment on the filings.
Shares of Morgan Stanley have soared 17 percent since the close of trading before Trump's victory, reaching their highest level in 16 months.
Trump has sided with leading conservatives in calling for the repeal of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Financial Reform Act largely opposed by banks.
(Reporting by Olivia Oran in New York; Editing by Lauren Tara LaCapra and Andrew Hay)
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