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Study: High CEO salaries may be bad for business

Data shows that highest paid execs produced less

The title of CEO brings visions of a gluttonous capitalist, a greedy leader who makes decisions based on balance sheets and the boardroom’s temperature, and earning gobs of money plus stock options for their “talent” and brawn.  While conventional wisdom says that successful companies pay their head executives multi-million dollar salaries, new research finds that the more organizations pay their CEOS, the more they perform poorly and hinder business.

New data from the University of Utah shows that execs in the top 10 percent for compensation produced 10 percent smaller returns for their investors over the a period of three years. According to, the difference is even more pronounced if you look at even more elite CEOs. Companies led by the top 5 percent of earners secured 15 percent less for shareholders than their industry peers, on average.

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Alexis Harrison

Alexis Harrison is a Connecticut-based writer and public relations professional whose career spans both print journalism and broadcast news. Alexis started her professional life as...

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