(Newser) – For every dollar made by the average Facebook employee, Mark Zuckerberg earned $37 in 2017. As far as CEO pay goes, that’s nothing. The CEOs of America’s top 350 publicly held companies earned an average of $18.9 million in wages, bonuses, and stock options last year, or 312 times more than their workers, according to a report by the Economic Policy Institute. Per the Guardian, such an “astronomical gap” hasn’t been seen since the eve of the 2007 financial crisis. The 17.6% increase in average CEO pay, compared to 0.3% for workers, had a lot to do with a booming stock market, but it’s also part of a larger trend. Since 2009, average CEO pay has risen 72%, compared to about 2% for workers, who now make $54,600 on average.
“It speaks to the degree the economic recovery is unbalanced,” report co-author Larry Mishel tells the Washington Post, which describes CEO-to-worker pay ratios of 3,101-to-1 for McDonald’s CEO Steve Easterbrook and 1,188-to-1 for Walmart CEO Doug McMillon. “Had there not been the redistribution upward … the wages of the bottom 90% could have grown twice as fast as it actually did,” Mishel tells the Guardian. Per the Post, 2018 figures could be even worse for workers given the tax package signed into law last fall; critics say it will make the rich richer, though Republican backers claim it will increase wages across the board.
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