Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Mantra Remains the Same: "Greed is Good"

Average pay for Wisconsin corporate CEOs up 27% in 2010. (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel)

Excerpt:   On average, total compensation for chief executive officers at 57 publicly traded companies increased by about $1 million last year, bringing the average CEO's pay up to $3.89 million. The raise more than made up for two years of compensation declines, according to the annual Journal Sentinel review of executive pay.

As a group, the 57 companies paid their chief executives more than $237 million combined last year - a sum that is greater than the 2011 general fund budget for the City of Madison.

Topping the pay charts again was Johnson Controls Inc.'s Stephen Roell, who received a 53% pay increase, bringing his pay package to run the state's largest public company up to $17.6 million.

The average worker in Wisconsin made $39,104 as of last fall, down from $39,156 the previous year, according to the state Department of Workforce Development.

So the average Wisconsin public company CEO made about 100 times more than the typical working person in 2010. Nationally, the differential is about twice that big.

"CEOs live in their own bubble universe," said Stephen Rose, research professor and senior economist at the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. "They are really outside the law of supply and demand.

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