South Africa’s richest CEOs top an income gap study that shows how quickly they will earn the annual salary of their average countrymen.
Quartz this week linked British think-tank High Pay Centre’s Fat Cat Wednesday report with Bloomberg’s Global CEO Pay Index to calculate the comparative index.
“While CEOs in South Africa make far less on average than their US counterparts, their salaries were 541 times more than the average income in their own country,” Quartz reported on Thursday.
“It took CEOs in South Africa just over seven hours to make $13 194 (R180 251), which is the country’s average yearly wage.
“Assuming Monday, January 2, was a public holiday and they started work at 7.30am on Tuesday, January 3, CEOs in South Africa clocked in the annual average wage by 3pm that day.”
In November, Bloomberg reported that “if your life’s goal is to be a highly paid CEO, the US is the place to be. But if your dream is just to be richer than society, South Africa and India are great bets too”.
It was commenting on its Bloomberg Global CEO Pay Index, which ranked South African CEOs number one on an index of a pay-to-average income ratio, revealing how wide the gap was.
Its results showed that CEOs in South Africa earn around R97.5 million per year, compared with the R180 243 the average South African earns in the same period.
The Fat Cat Wednesday report – which focused on UK CEOs – revealed that top bosses around the world “will already have made more money by the first Wednesday of 2017 than the typical UK worker will earn all year”.
“After a year in which elites were criticised for being out of touch and ignorant about the concerns of ordinary people, these pay-gap figures confirm that there are dramatically different rates of pay at the top compared with what everyone else receives,” the High Pay Centre said.
“Our calculation is not designed to make the return to work harder than it already is,” said High Pay Centre director Stefan Stern.
“But Fat Cat Wednesday is an important reminder of the continuing problem of the unfair pay gap in the UK.
“We hope the government will recognise that further reform to pay practices is needed if this gap is to be closed. That will be the main point in our submission to the business department in its current consultation over corporate governance reform.”
– Fin24 / Bloomberg