Capping CEO salaries to fix the economy

The Takeaway

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Personal finance expert Alvin Hall says the compensation packages CEOs receive are too high and they need to think about the greater good. He thinks capping the salaries of CEOs would go a long way in helping the economy.

“These salaries are way out of touch with the amount that the median worker earns,” he told The Takeaway. “You don’t need to earn that. You’ve had all these years of earning all this money and you’ve socked it away. Do something for the greater good.”

His idea: capping the total compensation that CEOs earn — including salary, benefits and bonuses — at $5 million. Any additional money would go back to the company, to create more jobs.

Perhaps billionaire CEO Warren Buffett, in light of his recent op-ed for The New York Times, would support the idea.

In the op-ed, entitled “Stop Coddling the Super-Rich,” Buffett wrote:

While the poor and middle class fight for us in Afghanistan, and while most Americans struggle to make ends meet, we mega-rich continue to get our extraordinary tax breaks. Some of us are investment managers who earn billions from our daily labors but are allowed to classify our income as “carried interest,” thereby getting a bargain 15 percent tax rate. Others own stock index futures for 10 minutes and have 60 percent of their gain taxed at 15 percent, as if they’d been long-term investors.


“The Takeaway” is a national morning news program, delivering the news and analysis you need to catch up, start your day, and prepare for what’s ahead. The show is a co-production of WNYC and PRI, in editorial collaboration with the BBC, The New York Times Radio, and WGBH.

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