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The role played by large firms in generating income inequality: UK FTSE 100 pay practices in the late 20th and early 21st centuries

Willman, Paul and Pepper, Alexander (2020) The role played by large firms in generating income inequality: UK FTSE 100 pay practices in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Economy and Society. ISSN 0308-5147 (In Press)

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Abstract

We examine the role of large firms in generating income inequality. Specifically, we consider the growth in the use of asset-based rewards for senior executives, combined with continued use of salaries and wages for other employees, and the impact this has on measures of inequality within firms. Our paper presents data on intra firm inequality from the UK FTSE 100 for the period 2000-2015. It looks at ratios of CEO to average earnings and attempts to explain both the growth in inequality on this measure and the extent of variance between firms. It distinguishes between a period of “administered inequality” up to the early 1980’s when intra-firm processes defined differential pay and a subsequent one of “outsourced inequality”, when capital market measures dominate executive pay. In the latter period, intra firm inequality measures are defined by upward movements in capital market measures and the extent of outsourcing of low paid work. We conclude by discussing a number of UK public policy proposals regarding executive pay.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: https://www.tandfonline.com/toc/reso20/current
Divisions: Management
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Date Deposited: 23 Mar 2020 12:54
Last Modified: 19 Sep 2020 23:32
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/103809

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