CEOs of Major Defense Contractors Earn More in a Day than Average U.S. Worker in a Year

Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Robert Stevens, CEO of Lockheed Martin

Running one of the nation’s largest defense contractors means making a lot of money—more money in a single day than most Americans earn during an entire year.


That’s what Project On Government Oversight found after analyzing the executive compensation of CEOs in charge of the top five defense contractors (Lockheed Martin, Boeing, General Dynamics, Northrup Grumman and Raytheon).


The chief executives of these five corporations enjoyed an average compensation package of about $21.5 million in 2011. Divide that by 365 and you get a daily rate of $58,904. By comparison, the average U.S. worker earned $45,230 last year.


This statistical fact would be just another example of income inequality in America were it not for the fact that U.S. taxpayers are paying for defense contracts, and the CEOs’ salaries are factored into the tab for the contracts which, in some cases, are awarded without competition.

-Noel Brinkerhoff, David Wallechinsky


To Learn More:

Pentagon Contractor CEO Compensation is Second to None (by Ben Freeman, Project on Government Oversight)

25 Major Companies Paid More to CEOs than They Did in Taxes (by Noel Brinkerhoff and David Wallechinsky, AllGov)



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