CEOs Rack Up Retirement Benefits: Study


The CEOs of the largest companies in America have accumulated retirement savings – through pension benefits, 401k accounts and more – that equal the savings of 50 million Americans, according to a new study.

The study, carried out by the Center for Effective Government and the Institute for Policy Studies, analyzed the retirement packages of 100 CEOs by looking at compensation disclosures filed with the SEC, as well as Federal Reserve data.

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

Based on their math, the 100 CEOs are entitled to $4.9 billion in retirement benefits. That’s an average of $49.3 million each, or enough to provide a monthly check of $277,686 for the rest of their lives. (The paycheck estimate is based on an annuity calculator at

“The CEO-worker retirement divide turns our country’s already extreme income divide into an even wider economic chasm,” the report states.

The 10 CEOs with the biggest retirement accounts are all white males whose retirement benefits total $1.4 billion. The 10 female CEOs with the most lucrative retirement benefits are only entitled to $280 million collectively, while the total for the 10 largest CEOs of color is $196 million.


The two groups have some ideas for closing the retirement pay gap, including ending the ability of executives to contribute as much as they want to tax-deferred compensation plans. The plans work like 401(k) accounts and include money contributed by the executive and their company.

They’d also like to eliminate tax deductions that companies enjoy for pension and retirement costs — if the companies have frozen worker pension plans, closed pension plans to new hires or have pension plans that are not at least 90 percent funded.

View the study here.

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