A proposal to give Countrywide Financial Corp. shareholders an annual advisory vote on executive compensation was defeated Wednesday at the company's annual meeting.

The proposal by the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees got just 31.7% of the votes. Last year a similar proposal garnered 43%.

This time 59.6% of shareholders who voted on the proposal rejected it, and the remaining 8.7% abstained; 87.5% of Countrywide's shareholders voted, either in person or by proxy.

"I am grateful to the shareholders for their thoughtful vote, their intelligent vote," Angelo Mozilo, Countrywide's chairman and chief executive, said after announcing the results. "It's clear evidence that the board has a done a good job of aligning my compensation to the benefit of shareholders."

This year his total compensation will drop at least 48%, to $22 million, and as much as 63%, to $16 million, depending on the company's return on equity.

"Say on pay" measures have won a majority of votes this year at annual meetings of Blockbuster Inc., Motorola Inc., and Verizon Communications Inc.

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