The UK’s Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) believes a survey of its members shows there is “a strong sense” that high levels of pay at asset managers are preventing them from “properly” holding companies to account over pay practices.
Releasing its 2016 AGM season report, which focuses on executive pay, the association said 87% of pension funds responding to its survey believe executive pay is too high.
Of those, 63% think executive pay is generally too high, according to the PLSA, while 37% believe it is too high in cases of poor performance.
The pay gap between executives and their workforce was identified as a problem by 85% of respondents.
The PLSA said the survey also found concerns regarding the capacity of asset managers to fulfil their stewardship responsibilities.
It said 35% of respondents indicated they were dissatisfied with their asset manager’s approach to executive pay.
The association said 60% of respondents indicated high levels of pay in the asset management industry were a problem.
The PLSA said the report’s analysis of remuneration-related shareholder votes at company AGMs found that “overall levels of dissent did not change dramatically in 2016”.
Luke Hildyard, the PLSA’s policy lead for stewardship and corporate governance, said it would update its guidelines to encourage its members and their asset managers “to take a tougher line on the re-election of company directors responsible for executive pay practices”.
The PLSA’s report comes two days after the UK government launched a consultation on corporate governance at UK companies, including proposals on the subject of executive pay.