CEOs Who Make Hundreds Of Times What Their Workers Do

Not all CEOs are as generous as Apple’s (Nasdaq: AAPL) Steve Jobs. The company’s founder makes $1 a year (although he holds plenty of Apple stock), while a starting sales associate at one of his Apple stores makes more than $31,200. But Jobs is an exception, not the rule.

Even though the gap between executive and entry-level worker pay has shrunk ever so slightly in the past couple of years, it’s still not unusual for the CEO of a large public company to earn more per day than some of his employees earn over the course of an entire year.

We looked at fourteen companies where the difference between what the CEO makes and what an entry-level worker makes is unusually large. We obtained our CEO salary figures (which include cash, bonuses, stock options and any other perks — including items like corporate jets), from the most recent proxy statements. Employee salary figures, many of them based on hourly wages, came from the companies, as well as from interviews we conducted with unions and workers themselves.

To get a sense of how the CEO of a company you regularly do business with pays his or her employees compared to themselves, we’ve broken it down for you below:

CVS Caremark (NYSE: CVS)
Thomas M. Ryan: $30.4 million (2009 Compensation)
Starting Cashier: $8/hour, $20,800/year
One CEO = 1,461 entry-level employees

Randall Stephenson: $29.2 million (2009 Compensation)
Starting Sales Associate: $10/hour, $26,000/year
One CEO = 1,123 entry-level employees

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