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Manager-employee salary gap still growing

The gap between the salaries of managers and employees is widening despite the economic crisis, according to the employees’ association, Travail.Suisse.

In a study published on Monday, the organisation said the difference in salaries had widened by 18 per cent in 2009, and by 70 per cent since 2002.

“The constant rise in managers’ pay puts at risk the Swiss model of economic success, which is based on trust, decency and a functioning social partnership,” says the study, which looked at 27 companies.

The economic crisis had only a passing effect in closing the gap, the study says. The difference in pay decreased in a few companies which were affected by the crisis, but the gap continued to widen in areas like pharmaceuticals, where the crisis was not felt at all, or in banks, where it is no longer acute.

“No lessons have been learned,” the study claims.

It calls for “fundamental changes”, in particular that the staff should be represented on the board. Other demands are that bonuses should be limited and taxed above SFr1 million ($877,000), and that other special payments should be banned.

The current study on the subject is the sixth to have been conducted by Travail Suisse, the umbrella organisation for 170,000 employees. and agencies


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