FTSE 100 Bosses Have Already Earned The Average UK Salary

Research shows that the top executives earn more than 100 times the average wage for UK employees.

How big a problem is equality in the UK?

Just three and a half days into the new year, the CEOs of the UK's top companies have already earned as much money as the average Brit will bring in over the entire course of 2024.

By midday (GMT) on Thursday, chiefs from these major companies will reportedly have earned £35,000, according to research from the High Pay Centre: The annual median wage for full-time employees in the country.

"Obscene Pay Inequality"

Overall, including pensions, these top executives receive an average annual reward of £3.81 million ($4.8 million), equivalent to £1,170 ($1,486) per hour and 109 times the average full-time worker's rate. The calculations are based on salaries disclosed in companies' annual reports, and the figures have sparked criticism from the Trades Union Congress (TUC), which described them as indicative of "obscene levels of pay inequality."

High Pay Centre director Luke Hildyard commented that these figures challenge arguments that top earners in the UK are not adequately compensated, emphasizing the need to address income inequality.

Worsening Inequality And Uneven Recovery

The report comes at a time when economists are predicting a bleak year for the UK, which is likely to see stagnant growth at best.

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One of the factors economists highlight is an uneven recovery that will contribute to inequality, something the High Pay Centre's research indicates is not going out of fashion.

The UK economy has struggled to remain competitive following its exit from the EU, and is falling behind its peers in recovering from COVID. While inflation is falling, it has remained stickier than in other countries, particularly the US, and households are still feeling the pinch, even as the Bank of England contemplates changing its stance on rate reductions.

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