As images of holiday bonuses dance through our heads, we thought it was a good time to look at the compensation of a handful of the semiconductor industry's CEOs. We found packages that ranged from less than $3 million to nearly $20 million.
To put that in perspective, the average pay of 327 CEOs of the biggest companies in the U.S. was $12.3 million in 2012, including salaries, bonuses, perks, stock awards, stock options and other incentives. That's according to research conducted by the AFL-CIO. The worker's union also reported that the CEO of an S&P 500 Index company made, on average, 354 times the wage of a rank-and-file U.S. worker in 2012.
There is no legislation capping pay for executives in what IC Insights says are the countries that produce most of the world's semiconductors -- Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and the United States. However, several other countries are considering limits to executive pay.
In the U.S. the Securities and Exchange Commission proposed in September a new rule that would require public companies to disclose the ratio of the compensation of its chief executive to the median compensation of its employees.
In November, Swiss voters rejected a proposal to curb executive compensation. The "1:12 -- for fair wages" initiative, which proposed capping executive salaries at 12 times the level of the lowest paid employee, was rejected by 65.3 percent of voters. It failed to win majority support in any of the country's 26 districts, CNN reported .
European Union officials are working to limit bonuses for bankers earning more than 500,000 euros ($678,000) a year, limiting bonuses to twice the executive’s annual salary. The proposal would affect more than 35,000 bankers around the world and is being challenged by the British government.
In Germany, Europe’s largest fiscally solvent country, officials vowed to take up pay inequity in the next parliamentary session. Chancellor Angela Merkel stated that “exorbitance cannot be allowed in a free and socially minded society.”
As of September 2013, CEOs of French state firms cannot make more than 20 times the salaries the lowest-paid employee earns. Thus salaries are capped at around $600,000, NPR reported. Meanwhile, Dutch officials announced new legislation that would cap golden parachutes at a maximum of 75,000 euros ($98,000).
With this perspective we invite you to click through the following pages to read what some of the top semiconductor companies are paying their chief executive officers.
Yes they are big, but not nearly so breathtaking as some high tech execs such as Oracle's Larry Ellison who reportedly took home nearly $100 million in 2012. Ka-ching!