Fund group bonus culture is ‘out of control’


Bonuses paid to the bosses of the world’s biggest fund groups were 15 times larger than their salaries last year,analysis reveals.

Among 20 of the largest listed asset managers in Europe and the US, research by FTfm shows BlackRock’s chief executive Larry Fink and T Rowe Price chief James Kennedy had the highest level of variable pay to their fixed salary.

According to the report, Fink’s pay in 2015, which was made up of bonuses and share awards, was 2,766 per cent of fixed pay totalling $26m (£20m), almost 30 times his base salary.

Kennedy had a total pay of $9m, which was 2,399 per cent of his fixed pay for the past year.

Within Europe, Ashmore’s Mark Coombs emerged as the highest paid with a total pay of 1,837 per cent of his fixed pay at a total of £1.9m.

ShareAction senior policy officer Camilla de Ste Croix told the newspaper asset management bonus culture was “out of control”.

She says: “Following the financial crisis, a lot of new EU legislation and reforms were directed at the banking sector. The asset management sector has not faced the same level of scrutiny.”

The news comes after star fund manager Neil Woodford announced his firm will stop paying bonuses to senior staff in a review of the firm’s pay structure.

Before her appointment as Prime Minister, Theresa May pledged to place tighter controls on executive pay to ensure the country works not just for “the privileged few”.

In August, a Money Marketing research revealed a lack of transparency about how fund managers are paid, and lack of clarity on whether fund performance is the real driver behind pay.

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