Ethos says executive pay falls in the Swiss financial sector

New report from pension fund-owned foundation

Ethos, the Swiss sustainability foundation owned by 137 institutional investors, says aggregate board and executive pay in financial sector companies in the country fell by 23% in 2011, while it rose by 5% in the other sectors.
Overall, the figures show that remuneration in corporate Switzerland was down 6% compared to 2010.

Board chairmen received on average CHF1.1m (€900,000) in 2011 (down 17% on 2010). The top 20 highest paid executive managers received more than CHF5m each.

Its study of the 2011 board and executive remuneration in the 100 largest Swiss listed companies also shows that 49 companies put their remuneration report to a shareholder advisory vote in 2012 – just four more than the previous year.

But the average opposition to companies’ remuneration report was 14.4%, up from 13.6% in 2010.And Ethos saw an improvement in the transparency of remuneration reports, as well as a “more open attitude” toward dialogue in the companies that submit their remuneration reports to a shareholder vote.

Ethos earlier this year said it was launching a sustainability ratings service as part of an expansion of its traditional services to clients.

“A more open attitude towards dialogue”

In other news, former UBS trader Kweku Adoboli is set to go on trial in London this week in a case relating to trading losses estimated at $2.3bn. “We must assume that UBS’s culture and practices will be examined during the course of the trial,” the bank’s CEO Sergio Ermotti has been quoted saying.