September 25, 2017 / 12:39 PM / 3 months ago

Bonuses widen pay gap between Britain's male and female executives

LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Female managers in Britain earn almost 27 percent less than their male colleagues and the gap is widening, fueled by large differences in bonus payments, researchers said on Monday.

Women are also far more likely to hold junior management roles, according to a study by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) and XpertHR.

“Too many businesses are like ‘glass pyramids’ with women holding the majority of lower-paid junior roles and far fewer reaching the top,” said CMI’s chief executive Ann Francke.

The analysis found in 2017 female managers earned on average nearly 12,000 pounds ($16,000) less than men - a gap almost 3,000 pounds wider than in 2016.

The increase was partly due to bonuses and other benefits like car allowances and commissions being included in the calculation for the first time, after the introduction of new government regulations on reporting pay.

But the pay gap had widened from 2016 even when only base salaries were taken into account, the report said.

“Those extra perks of senior management roles are creating a gender pay gap wider than previously understood,” Francke said in a statement.

“The picture is worst at the top, with male CEOs cashing-in bonuses six times larger than female counterparts,” she added.

Male managers received on average almost 47 percent more bonus payments but the gulf widened to 83 percent for chief executives, with men pocketing nearly 90,000 pounds ($120,000) a year in bonuses against women’s 15,000 pounds.

In April, Britain became one of the first countries to introduce regulations requiring large firms to report pay discrepancies between male and female employees.

But the report, which analyzed the salaries of more than 118,000 mangers from more than 400 organizations, found only 72 of the 7,850 employers covered by the new law had done so.

Closing Britain’s gender pay gap could add 150 billion pounds to the country’s annual gross domestic product by 2025, according to consulting firm McKinsey Global Institute.

Reporting by Umberto Bacchi @UmbertoBacchi, Editing by Ros Russell.; Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's rights, trafficking, property rights, climate change and resilience. Visit news.trust.org

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