Top US Execs Total Cash Comp Up in 2006

November 20, 2006 ( - The highest-paid executives in America have received a 48.2% increase in their average annual cash bonus and were paid 31.2% more total cash compensation than in 2005, according to new figures.

The November 2006 Executive Compensation Index figures were released by the Economic Research Institute and and these findings are calculated from year-to-date reporting for 2006 compared to the year earlier, according to a WorldatWork report.

According to the data:

  • For the highest paid executives, the average base salary stands at $1,273,978 compared to year 2005 base salary levels of $1,277,944 – a 0.31% decrease in base compensation.
  • For the highest paid executives, the average annual cash bonus is $3,521,615, compared to $2,375,615 the year before – a 48.2% hike.
  • For the highest paid executives, the average total cash compensation is $4,795,096 compared to year 2005 total cash compensation of $3,653,559 – a 31.2% increase over the year before.

The previous yearly high of $3,683,131 total cash compensation was set in 2001. Average compensation for top executives dropped in 2002 but has increased each year since then.

The Total Cash Compensation Index reflects data from a representative group of 45 publicly traded companies randomly selected from the approximately 6,500 companies that report compensation data to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). More information is at .