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Are Canada's highest paid CEOs worth their salaries?

Categories: Business, Canada, Community

 Magna CEO Frank Stronach was among the Canadian CEOs who earned millions in 2010. (Frank Gunn/Canadian Press)Canada's highest paid CEOs will have earned more by noon on Jan. 3 than the average Canadian will earn all year, a new report says.

The top 100 CEOs at companies listed on the S&P/TSX composite index earned about $8.38 million each in 2010, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives said in its report.

The average Canadian, meanwhile, earned just $44,366 - 189 times less than what the CEOs earned.

CEOs at Magna International Inc., Research in Motion, Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan, Quebecor and Loblaw Cos. Ltd. are among the top 100.

The reasons for the massive gap are complex and tied to how executive compensation packages are structured, according to the report's author, economist Hugh Mackenzie.

Consultants giving advice to corporate boards on how much to pay their CEOs only compare to other CEOs, perpetually driving up the average in the race to be above-average, he explained.

Many companies also use stock options for a large part of their executives' bonuses, which tends to drive up pay packages and tie compensation to share price rather than company performance, he said.

Do you think CEOs are worth the money? Why or why not? How has your salary improved or worsened in the last year? Share your thoughts in the field below.

(This survey is not scientific. Results are based on readers' responses.)

Tags: POV

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