Executive Pay Rises 10% in Britain, Adding to Debate – NYTimes.com

Executive Pay Rises 10% in Britain, Adding to Debate – NYTimes.com.

 Pay for top managers in Britain rose 10 percent last year, a report released on Tuesday showed, providing fresh ammunition for critics who argue that executive pay has become excessive.

Chief executives of Britain’s 100 largest publicly traded companies received a median pay increase of 10 percent last year, according to a report by Manifest, a proxy voting agency, and MM&K, which advises on remuneration. That is higher than Britain’s inflation rate of 3 percent, and the median executive package was about 200 times more than the average pay of employees in the private sector.

Shareholders are increasingly fighting back against pay packages that they consider to be too excessive at a time of economic turmoil and a volatile stock market environment. Firms in the United States and Europe, including CitigroupUBSCredit Suisse and Barclays, have faced shareholder revolts against their pay practices this year.

In Britain, the insurance firm Aviva and the oil company Cairn Energy had their remuneration reports rejected this year by shareholders in a nonbinding vote. Aviva’s chief executive later resigned over the controversy.

Anthony Watson, chairman of the remuneration committee of the British lender Lloyds Banking Group, conceded to a parliamentary committee on Tuesday that when it came to executive pay, not “everything in the garden is rosy.”


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