FTSE 100 bosses earn 117 times more than average worker

Just three working days into the new year, the top FTSE 100 chief executives have already matched the annual salary of the average UK employee – by the end of the year, they’ll have made more than 117 times that of the typical worker. Aiming to bring an end to this financial disparity, the Greens have called for new legislation to ensure a 10:1 pay ratio between the highest and lowest paid workers in any company.

The City of London
The City of London

Image: Flickr // kloniwotski // CC BY-SA 2.0

Imogen Benson

The Greens have called for new legislation to clamp down on income inequality after new figures from thinktank the High Pay Centre revealed that FTSE 100 chief executives earn 117 times the annual pay of the average worker. 

By 5pm today (6 January), the chief executives of the UK’s top 100 companies will have already earned more than the typical worker is paid in an entire year – a day known annually as Fat Cat Day. Whilst the average worker is paid £14.37 an hour, with an annual salary of £29,559, a typical FTSE 100 boss will earn £901.30 an hour, adding up to £3.46 million a year.

In light of this, the Green Party has proposed a 10:1 ratio between the highest and lowest paid workers in any company, banning any bonuses exceeding the annual wage of the lowest-paid worker in the organisation. 

With the gender pay gap currently at 8.9 per cent, the Greens would also take action to close the divide between male and female salaries.  

Green Party Co-leader Jonathan Bartley said: “It is outrageous that fat cat bosses are taking home such vast amounts of money while many of their workers are struggling to make ends meet.

“Such huge disparities only serve to fuel the rampant inequality that is pulling away at the fabric of our society. A lower pay ratio would not only benefit both employees and the company itself, but would also help reduce the ever-widening inequality that is harming communities across the country.

“It is also vital that companies are doing everything they can to close the gender pay gap, which is why we would also want to see all large and medium-size companies carry out equal pay audits and redress any inequalities uncovered.”

The income disparity between executives and workers is due to come under increased fire over the coming months, as legislation introduced in January 2019 requires that companies with more than 250 staff publish the pay ratio between their CEOs and average workers in early 2020.