It pays – big – to be a Canadian CEO

TheGlobeandMail.com – ROB/Business Briefing
Nov. 18, 2016.   MICHAEL BABAD

$9.32-million – Average Canadian CEO pay package

It pays – big – to be a Canadian CEO.

Indeed, according to a new global ranking of average compensation, our chief executive officers are the fourth-highest-paid in 25 countries measured.

The average in Canada is $9.32-million (U.S.), slightly behind Britain, a bit more behind Switzerland, and way behind the United States, to whom no other country comes close.

The compensation packages, which takes in salaries, bonuses, pensions, perks and equity schemes, were taken from the public filings of companies listed in primary stock indexes, in Canada’s case the S&P/TSX composite.

The findings are from at least half the companies, or 100 of them, listed on the index in question.

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Global CEO pay index

Rank   Economy        Index value      CEO pay (millions $U.S., latest filing)      Equity index universe
–          World                100                       $6.51                                                           –
1           U.S.                  260.27                 $16.95                                                        S&P 500
2           Switzerland      162.51                  $10.58                                                        Swiss Market Index
3           Britain               147.53                 $9.61                                                           FTSE 100
4           Canada             143.14                 $9.32                                                           S&P/TSX Composite
5           Netherlands      132.93                 $8.66                                                           AEX
6           Germany           128.34                 $8.36                                                           DAX 30
7           South Africa      109.69                 $7.14                                                           FTSE/JSE TOP40
8           Norway              106.92                 $6.96                                                           OBX
9           Spain                  94.41                  $6.15                                                           IBEX 35
10         Singapore           85.92                  $5.60                                                           FTSE Straits Times

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Global CEO pay-to-average income ratio

Rank   Economy           Pay ratio      CEO pay (millions $U.S., latest filing)      GDP per capita PPP 2016/2015
1          South Africa        541.4               $7.14                                                            $13,194.00
2          India                    483.06             $3.10                                                            $6,423.00
3          U.S.                     298.98            $16.95                                                           $56,689.00
4          Britain                  228.7              $9.61                                                             $42,006.00
5          Canada                202.98            $9.32                                                             $45,921.00
6          Switzerland         179.34             $10.58                                                           $59,011.00
7          Germany             175.65             $8.36                                                             $47,582.00
8          Spain                   172.42             $6.15                                                             $35,656.00
9          Netherlands         172.32             $8.66                                                             $50,235.00
10        Israel                    119.42             $4.11                                                             $34,444.00

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Source: Bloomberg – note: compensation data sourced from public filings. ceo pay includes any salary, cash bonuses, pension, deferred pay, value of perquisites and non-cash remuneration such as equity award. pay figures come from at least 50 percent or 100 of the constituents in each index. dual-listed companies were included in both indexes. world ceo pay was the average of all primary index member ceo pays researched. gdp per capita, adjusted for purchasing power, represents the most recent two-year average, as corporate filing cycles don’t always match up with the calendar year.

Bloomberg also switched things up to look at CEO compensation a bit differently, as measured against the populace. Here, Canada slips a notch while South Africa and India rise to the top.

This measure isn’t perfect, Bloomberg says, but you still get the picture.

As The Globe and Mail’s Janet McFarland reports, last year was a rough one for many of Canada’s embattled natural resource companies.

But some boards still boosted compensation for their CEOs even as workers lost their jobs, exposing the philosophical divide in corporate Canada about executive pay during a slump.

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