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In this paper, an automatic exposure compensation method is proposed for image enhancement. For the exposure compensation, a novel image segmentation method based on luminance distribution is also proposed. Most single-image-enhancement methods often cause details to be lost in bright areas in images or cannot sufficiently enhance contrasts in dark regions. The image-enhancement method that uses the proposed compensation method enables us to produce high-quality images which well represent both bright and dark areas by fusing pseudo multi-exposure images generated from a single image. Here, pseudo multi-exposure images are automatically generated by the proposed exposure compensation method. To generate effective pseudo multi-exposure images, the proposed segmentation method is utilized for automatic parameter setting in the compensation method. In experiments, image enhancement with the proposed compensation method outperforms state-of-the-art image enhancement methods including Retinex-based methods, in terms of both entropy and statistical naturalness. Moreover, visual comparison results show that the proposed compensation method is effective in producing images that clearly present both bright and dark areas.