CEO Pay Is 380 Times Average Worker's, Says AFL-CIO

CEOs average 380x American salaryBy Jennifer Liberto

WASHINGTON -- Chief executives at some of the nation's largest companies earned an average of $12.9 million in total pay last year -- 380 times more than a typical American worker, according to the AFL-CIO.

Average CEO pay rose 14 percent compared to 2010, when they earned $11.4 million on average, according to the union group.

The AFL-CIO each year highlights the pay disparity between workers and chief executives from companies that are part of Standard & Poor's 500 stock index.

"All employees create value. CEO pay levels should be more in line with the rest of the company's employee pay structure," said Richard Trumka, AFL-CIO president. "CEOs should be paid as a member of a team, not as a superstar."

The labor group unveiled an updated website database compiled from 300 companies based on filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The union group uses the Bureau of Labor Statistics wage data to define typical worker pay, which was $34,053 for all occupations last year.

The data are searchable on the website, which is run by the union. The site will eventually post CEO pay for all 500 companies as that data is released in proxies submitted to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

In 1980, CEOs at the largest companies received 42 times the pay of the average worker, according to the union. In 2000 the gap hit a high, with CEOs making 525 times the average worker.

In 2010, the gap narrowed, with CEOs making 343 times the average worker. Trumka himself makes roughly four times the average worker.

The union group's 15-year old website was updated this year to reflect new laws that went into effect in 2011 requiring publicly traded firms to hold nonbinding shareholder votes on executive pay packages.

The site allows users to look at how mutual funds and investment firms voted on executive pay packages in 2011. So far in 2012, investors voted against pay packages at 4 companies, including the $15 million pay raise for Vikram Pandit at Citigroup. Last year, investors voted against pay packages at 40 companies.

"Shareholders are beginning to protest," Trumka said. "Investors now have the ability speak out on outsized CEO pay packages on say-on-pay votes."

Trumka also called upon the SEC to implement another law highlighting executive pay, which passed in 2010 as a part of Wall Street reforms. The SEC has yet to detail how publicly traded firms should disclose and compare CEO to employee pay at individual companies.

Calls for comment to lobbying groups that represent chief executives were not immediately returned.

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Michael Beni

maybe if u ******* union idiots didnt want to take so much and be so greedy there would still be "middle class jobs" left in this country!!! our auto industry wouldnt have died and we wouldnt be so deep in this rescession

May 10 2012 at 11:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Brian D Powers

It is not envy to say this is completely out of wack. Paid commentors towing right wing talking points are not fooling anybody. CEO' s dont invent or work so hard they deserve our entire countries wealth. They jist know how to manipulate the system to their advantage. For most people a moral compass would stop them from wreaking havoc on entire society, however those who are sociopathic enough not to care about collateral damage reap the biggest fortunes.

April 22 2012 at 9:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply


Whose business is this? Answer: the shareholders. Not AOL/Huffpuff dimwit lib readers.

Even when Americans do have a say - on America's CEO - they are so stupid they vote for Obama.

April 22 2012 at 1:38 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

How did this pay get out of hand?

April 21 2012 at 12:13 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to nflamingo's comment
Michael Beni

its not out of hand. its what they are worth cause its a free market economy if someone could do their job for less they would be hired. its like an athlete. they only make so much money cause they are bringing that much to the table. the real crime is the atrocities committed by the labor unions and how they make america so much less competitive then the rest of the world and force jos overseas and nearly destroyed our auto industry

May 10 2012 at 11:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Michael Beni's comment
Michael Beni

and w the athlete comparison its not an opinion this player is so good so he should get x amount of dollars. its math. its how much jerseys w this players name on it and how many more tickets, etc. will we sell with this player on our team

May 10 2012 at 11:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down

The best thing about the internet is that people are talking and learning more about the evils that used to be done "behind closed doors". And they are Not happy and want to stop it.

April 20 2012 at 9:23 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

and WHO was surprised to hear this about CEO's and thier pay scale??? all those arrogant people think everyone is stupid,,,and yet we are for lettimng this happen to us each and every day of our lives,,I say we taking them all fishing!!

April 20 2012 at 7:47 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Of course and as long as the republicants are in controll they will never have to pay taxes on that money.Wellfare to the Rich.

April 20 2012 at 7:33 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Oh, let us reduce the salaries of all the Labor Unions' presidents because their pay is way high compared to the lowest paid members. Plus let us reduce their travel expenses because last fiscal year these people spent almost $6 million while the lowest paid members will just try to have a hotel rate as low as $30.00/night and can barely afford a 5- day vacation a year.

April 20 2012 at 7:16 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

Is it envy or GREED? Who authorizes their pay scale? I believe in Free Enterprize. You invent a widget and get rich. Good for you. You didn't start the company? Why the big pay?

April 20 2012 at 7:04 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

CEO's should all be lynched.

April 20 2012 at 6:39 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to plainbrian's comment
Jun and Terry

french revolution 2

April 21 2012 at 12:03 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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