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Survey Results Show a Median CEO Pay Ratio of 140:1

REDWOOD CITY, CA (February 1, 2018) —Equilar has conducted an anonymous survey of 356 public companies to identify the CEO Pay Ratio they plan to report in their 2018 proxy statements. Overall, the survey found that the median was 140:1 among this group of companies.

In 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) passed a ruling that required public companies to report the ratio of compensation for their CEO in comparison to that of a median employee.

Key findings from the survey included:

  • The median CEO pay ratio across all 356 submitting companies was 140:1. At the 25th percentile, the ratio was 72:1, and was 246:1 at the 75th percentile. The average was 241:1.

  • Median employee compensation for all companies in the survey was $60,000.

  • The median CEO pay ratio was larger in direct correlation to company revenue, totaling 47:1 for companies below $1 billion in revenue and 263:1 for companies above $15 billion in revenue.

  • Similarly, companies with the greatest number of employees had the largest ratio (318:1) and the smallest median employee compensation ($46,000). The smallest companies, with fewer than 2,310 employees, had the lowest ratio (45:1) and highest median pay ($85,580). Equilar split companies by employee size into five equal quintiles for this particular analysis.

  • Ratios by industry sector varied much more widely:

    • “Consumer discretionary” companies, which include retail and hospitality, had the highest ratio with a median 350:1.

    • Energy companies had the lowest ratio at 72:1.

    • Median employee pay at the 48 consumer discretionary companies that responded to the survey was $21,840 vs. $107,887 for the 30 energy companies that responded.

Please click here to download an executive summary of the report. For full details on the study, contact or enter comments into the form fill field.

Equilar hosted a webinar on February 1, 2018 with the Center On Executive Compensation and Edelman to discuss the findings more in depth and provide actionable takeaways on how to communicate upcoming CEO pay ratio disclosures to investors, employees and the media. Click the link above to request a replay.

About Equilar

Equilar is the leading provider of board intelligence solutions. Its data-driven platforms, BoardEdge and Insight, provide tools for board recruiting, business development, executive compensation and shareholder engagement. Companies of all sizes, including 70% of the Fortune 500 and institutional investors representing over trillion in assets, rely on Equilar for their most important boardroom decisions. Equilar also hosts industry-leading board education symposiums, conducts comprehensive custom research services and publishes award-winning thought leadership. Founded in 2000, Equilar is cited regularly by Associated Press, Bloomberg, CNBC, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and other leading media outlets. Visit to learn more.

For more information, contact:

Amit Batish
Content Manager
Equilar, Inc.

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(650) 241-6655

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