Pay FTSE 100 CEOs jumps to almost £4 million

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Chief executive pay packages have soared by 11 per cent in the past year, with median salaries at just under £4 million, according to new research.

An annual assessment from the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development, and the independent think-tank the High Pay Centre, found the median CEO pay at a FTSE 100 company in 2017 stood at £3.93m per year, an increase from £3.53m in 2016.

This rise compares with a 2 per cent increase in median pay for full-time workers.

Using the “mean” measure, which is more affected by this year’s very large payouts to CEOs at Persimmon and Melrose Industries, the figure increased by 23 per cent to £5.66m, said the report. This means CEOs earned 145 times more than the mean pay packet of their employees, up from 128 in 2016.

Of the 100 companies, only 34 are accredited for paying the living wage to all of their UK-based staff.

Women make up 7 per cent of FTSE 100 CEOs, however they earn just 3.5 per cent of total pay.

Peter Cheese, chief executive of the CIPD, said: “Despite increased investor activism and the planned introduction of pay ratio reporting, the evidence suggests that very little is changing when it comes to top pay in the UK.

“It’s disappointing to see that CEO pay has held up in the face of increasing pressure when average pay across the workforce which has barely shifted in recent years. However, pressure is building in the system.”

Luke Hildyard, director of the High Pay Centre, said: “It is deeply unsettling that such a substantial pay gap remains between CEOs and ordinary workers. How pay is distributed within organisations has a big effect on living standards, and by many measures the UK is one of the most unequal countries in Europe.”