Executive pay has grown from 60 times that of the average worker to almost 180 times since the 1990s, according to a report out today.
The High Pay Centre think tank said shareholders were still backing executive pay policies despite being given the power to vote them down at annual meetings.
It is urging the government to take “radical action” to close the gap, such as requiring firms to cap executive pay at a fixed multiple of their lowest paid employees.
The pay of the average FTSE 100 chief executive increased from £4.1 million to £4.7 million last year which, the report said, fuelled the perception that an executive “elite” was reaping all the reward from economic growth.
“It’s time to get serious about tackling the executive pay racket,” High Pay Centre director Deborah Hargreaves said.
“The government’s tinkering won’t bring about a proper change in the UK’s pay culture.”
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