CEO pay gap: It’s 350 X average
Americans might think they know how bad inequality is, but it turns out they have almost no idea.
A new study conducted at Harvard Business School found that Americans think CEOs make roughly 30 times what the average worker makes in the United States, when in actuality they are making more than 350 times the average worker.
“Americans drastically underestimated the gap in actual incomes between CEOs and unskilled workers,” the study says.
But that underestimation isn’t merely drastic – it is also unmatched in the world. The gap between Americans’ perception and reality is the largest among any of the 16 countries for which the researchers measured both the perceived and actual pay inequality.
Part of that stems from Americans’ comparatively modest estimation. The citizens of four countries – South Korea, Australia, Chile, and Taiwan – estimate a higher pay gap between CEOs and low-level workers. In South Korea, the perception is that CEOs make 42 times more than the average worker; in Australia, it’s just over 41; in Taiwan, it’s roughly 34; and in Chile, it’s about 33.
But the reason Americans are so bad at guessing how much CEOs make may also be tied to the fact that American CEOs are exceptionally well-paid.
The average CEO in the United States makes more than $12 million per year……