According to Bloomberg’s Global CEO Pay Index, released this morning, leaders of companies in the S&P 500 are paid an average of $16.9 million. That’s 2.6 times more than the average of counterparts in the benchmark indexes of 25 other countries. Swiss CEOs are the next best paid, earning 1.6 times more than the average, followed by leaders in the UK, Canada and The Netherlands.
The figures could embolden calls for greater pay regulation in the U.S. for public-company CEOs.
Of course, CEOs of companies not listed on the stock market are typically paid a lot less. Private company CEOs received a median total compensation package of $354,750, including bonuses and equity grants, according to Chief Executive’s 2016-2017 CEO Senior Executive Compensation Report for Private Companies.
In some cases, CEOs in other countries are exposed to tighter regulations. In the UK, for instance, executive pay is subject to a binding vote every three years.
At the bottom of Bloomberg’s list were Thailand and China, where CEOs earned an average of $60,000 and $640,000, respectively.
But although leaders could earn a lot more in the U.S., they’d be more likely to live like kings in South Africa, where CEOs earn 541 times more than the average citizen, according to Bloomberg.
CEOs get a good run in India, too, earning 483 times more. The U.S. slips back to number three on this list, with its CEOs earning around 300 times more.