Directors pay in the finance sector

We investigate directors pay at the worlds biggest banks

As directors’ pay is an issue of such concern in the financial sector we thought it would be good to give a more in-depth view. The table below shows the top pay declared by each company in 2016, even if it is below the £1 million cut off.

We mark companies down in the Anti-Social Finance column for paying their senior staff more than £1 million, as we believe more than this to be excessive in a world of huge inequalities.

With one notable exception (the Co-op Bank) it appears that there is a correlation between high executive pay and a low score on ethics across our broader ethical ranking.

Banks & Building societies 

 Top pay in 2016 

Citibank £11 million
American International Group (Chartis)  £9.4 million
HSBC (First Direct, M&S Money) £5.6 million
Lloyds (Halifax, Birmingham Midshires, Bank of Scotland)  £5.5 million
Banco Santander £5.3 million
Coop Bank £4.5 million
Barclays £4.2 million
Tesco Bank £4.2 million
TSB £3.7 million
RBS Group (NatWest, Coutts, RBS, Ulster) £3.5 million
Nationwide Building Society £3.4 million
J Sainsbury £2.3 million
Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banking Group £2 million
Virgin Money £2 million
Handelsbanken £1.8 million
Danske Bank £1.7 million
Metro Bank £1.3 million
Coventry Building Society £970, 000
Skipton Building Society

£921, 000

One Savings Bank (Kent Reliance) £910,00
Bank of Ireland (Post Office, Bank of Ireland) £843, 000
Yorkshire Building Society £701,000
West Bromwich Building Society £636, 000
Principality Building Society  £535, 000
ICICI £472, 000
Leeds Building Society £350,000
Newcastle Building Society £314,000
Cumberland Building Society £275, 000
Triodos Bank £265, 000
Al Rayan £253, 000
Unity Trust Bank £231,000
Charity Bank £140, 000
Ecology Building Society £97, 000
CAF Bank  -

Insurance Company 

Top pay in 2016 

Legal & General £5.3 million
Aviva £4.4 million
Allianz £4.1 million
Hiscox £3.9 million
Munich RE £3.6 million
Direct Line Group £3.5 million
Axa / Bluefin £3.2 million
NFU Mutual Insurance Society  £1.8 million
Liverpool Victoria Friendly £1.7 million
Inter Hannover £1.5 million
Ageas £1.3 million
Zurich £1.2 million
Admiral Group £587,739
JC Flowers & Co -
Edentree -
Covea -
Red Sands Insurance -

Investment fund and pensions providers

Top pay in 2016

Blackrock £18.2 million
Prudential PLC £7.5 million
Janus Henderson Investors (Janus Henderson Global Equity Fund) Figure for 2016 unavailable. £5.6 million in 2017
BMO Financial Group (F&C Global Equity Fund) £4.6 million
Jupiter Asset Management (Jupiter Ecology Fund) £3.8 million
Standard Life Aberdeen £2.7 million
Old Mutual plc £2.6 million
Caledonian Investment management (7IM Sustainable Balance) £1.6 million
Liontrust Asset Management PLC (Liontrust Sustainable Future European Growth) £1.6 million
Premier Asset Management Group (Premier Ethical Fund)  £602,000
Impax Environmental Markets plc (Impax Environmental Markets) £451,953
Fidelity International Ltd -
Castlefield Partners Ltd (Castlefield BEST Income Fund) -
Sarasin & Partners LLP (Sarasin Responsible Global) -
SVM Asset Management (SVM All Europe SRI) -
WHEB LLP (WHEB Sustainability Fund) -

Some research has suggested that top CEO pay seems to have fallen a bit across all sectors in the last couple of years. This brief look at the financial sector suggests that it is still far too high.

Furthermore, although these are the main figures declared in the company’s Annual Reports, they may be underestimates. The Financial Times lists much higher figures for some banks – for example, its figure for HSBC is £13 million and its figure for Barclays is £10.2 million. It is unclear how it calculated these numbers. Executive pay is very complex as much of it is given in the form of share options that mature at a later date.

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