Support 110 years of independent journalism.

  1. Politics
17 August 2009

Call for government to curb excessive pay

Vince Cable and Frank Field back Compass campaign for a high pay commission

By Staff Blogger

A campaign to create a high pay commission to curb excessive salaries and bonuses has attracted the support of a hundred public figures.

The Liberal Democrats’ Treasury Spokesman, Vince Cable, and the Labour MPs Jon Cruddas and Frank Field are among the supporters of the campaign led by the left-wing campaign group Compass.

The group advocates measures including maximum pay ratios and bonus taxation to prevent widening income inequality.

The proposed body would mirror the Low Pay Commission, created in 1997, which advised on the introduction of the minimum wage.

In a statement Compass said that the “unjust rewards” of a few hundred “masters of the universe” had helped trigger the financial crisis.

Select and enter your email address Your weekly guide to the best writing on ideas, politics, books and culture every Saturday. The best way to sign up for The Saturday Read is via saturdayread.substack.com The New Statesman's quick and essential guide to the news and politics of the day. The best way to sign up for Morning Call is via morningcall.substack.com
  • Administration / Office
  • Arts and Culture
  • Board Member
  • Business / Corporate Services
  • Client / Customer Services
  • Communications
  • Construction, Works, Engineering
  • Education, Curriculum and Teaching
  • Environment, Conservation and NRM
  • Facility / Grounds Management and Maintenance
  • Finance Management
  • Health - Medical and Nursing Management
  • HR, Training and Organisational Development
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Information Services, Statistics, Records, Archives
  • Infrastructure Management - Transport, Utilities
  • Legal Officers and Practitioners
  • Librarians and Library Management
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • OH&S, Risk Management
  • Operations Management
  • Planning, Policy, Strategy
  • Printing, Design, Publishing, Web
  • Projects, Programs and Advisors
  • Property, Assets and Fleet Management
  • Public Relations and Media
  • Purchasing and Procurement
  • Quality Management
  • Science and Technical Research and Development
  • Security and Law Enforcement
  • Service Delivery
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Travel, Accommodation, Tourism
  • Wellbeing, Community / Social Services
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how Progressive Media Investments may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.
THANK YOU

It also pointed to research that shows an employee working a 40-hour week on the minimum wage would have to work for around 226 years to receive the same annual pay as a FTSE 100 boss.

The statement said: “Remuneration and performance pay cycles are too short; rewards for failure are too great, to the detriment of the long-term future of these companies and the wider economy.

“The government must now take decisive action on excessive pay at the top when it has had such a damaging and corrosive effect on the real economy and wider society.”

It added: “We need a High Pay Commission to launch a wide-ranging review of pay at the top. It should consider proposals to restrict excessive remuneration such as maximum wage ratios and bonus taxation to provide the just society and sustainable economy we all want.”

Supporting the campaign, Cable said: “There is no justification for massive pay and bonus awards in financial institutions, the most important of which are guaranteed or owned or have been rescued by the taxpayer”.

The Chancellor, Alistair Darling, has recently indicated that the government is prepared to intervene to curb excessive bonuses when they pose a “systemic” risk to the banking system.

“If we need to change the law and toughen things up, we can do that,” he said.

The shadow chancellor, George Osborne, has also indicated that a Conservative government would act to prevent “unacceptable” bonuses.

Content from our partners
<strong>What you need to know about private markets </strong>
Work isn't working: how to boost the nation's health and happiness
The dementia crisis: a call for action

Topics in this article :