Thursday, November 28, 2013

High pay isn't repugnant in Switzerland after all, at least not to 65%

Here's the story from Bloomberg: Swiss Voters Reject Strict CEO Pay Limits in Referendum

"Swiss voters rejected a proposal to limit executives’ pay to 12 times that of junior employees yesterday, a measure that would have gone further than any other developed nation.
The measure was opposed by 65 percent of voters, the government in Bern said yesterday.
"“It’s a big relief,” Valentin Vogt, president of the Swiss Employers’ Association, said in an interview on Swiss national television SRF. “It’s a signal that it’s not up to the state to have a say in pay.”
Switzerland is the home to at least five of Europe’s 20 best-paid chief executive officers. Opposition to excessive pay has stiffened among the traditionally pro-business Swiss following the government bailout of UBS AG (UBSN), Switzerland’s biggest bank, in 2008 and a plan -- later scrapped -- by Novartis AG (NOVN) to pay outgoing Chairman Daniel Vasella as much as $78 million.
In March, Swiss voters approved the so-called fat-cat initiative that gave company shareholders a binding vote on managers’ pay and blocked golden handshakes and severance packages."

But sometimes high pay strikes some people as repugnant, and it's not just hedge fund managers: take a look at this story from the NY Daily News.

Top 16 NYC charter school executives earn more than Chancellor Dennis Walcott

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