The salaries of chief executives at top U.S. companies continued to rise last year – even at companies that have since failed or floundered, according to new data.
Figures gathered by independent corporate governance group the Corporate Library show that the median pay increase for top executives who received a raise in 2007 was 7.5 percent, CNN Money reports.
Even though the data reflects a financial period that predates the current recession, Paul Hodgson of the Corporate Library told the news provider that CEO pay may still seem out of sync.
"You’re still seeing a dichotomy between the experience of some employees that may be losing their jobs and the CEOs who don’t seem to be as affected," he explained.
In fact, some CEOs who made the list of the 30 highest paid executives have seen their companies suffer or collapse since making the list.
For example, former Lehman Brothers executive Richard Fuld was number 13 in the rankings, making $72 million last year, while Countrywide Financial’s former CEO Angelo Mozilo earned $124.7 million, placing him in the number 3 position.
Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy in September and was purchased by Barclays, while Countrywide’s subprime mortgage woes resulted in its acquisition by Bank of America in March.