United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz is one of the CEOs who is cutting his salary to zero.
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Topline: The chief executives of large U.S. companies whose businesses have been paralyzed by coronavirus restrictions, forcing worker furloughs and staff pay cuts, are giving up most, or all, of their salaries. This is largely seen as a gesture of goodwill: many of these titans make the majority of their annual compensation in stock awards and performance bonuses, allowing them to live far from the reality devastating millions of Americans out of work who lived paycheck-to-paycheck, some of whom were employed at these massive corporations.
- Disney chairman Bob Iger, the highest-paid entertainment exec, is forgoing salary, which was only $3 million of the $47.5 million he received last year.
- General Electric’s CEO Larry Culp is also forgoing salary for the rest of the year. In 2019 Culp’s salary was $2.5 million of a total $24.5 million annual compensation, according to the SEC, meaning he’d be taking a mere 10% pay cut.
- Buzzfeed CEO Jonah Peretti said he will not be compensated until coronavirus ends, announcing pay cuts between 5%-25% for the entire staff, according to Variety.
- Hilton CEO Christopher Nassetta will not receive his salary, which was $1.25 million out of his $19.8 million annual compensation, a 6% paycut per 2018 data, while furloughing 200,000 employees, according to USA Today.
- Delta CEO Ed Bastian cut his salary until the year end, which would mean a 6% paycut, or $891,667 loss from his $14.9 million yearly compensation.
- Alaska Airlines salary Brad Tilden cut his base salary of $563,846 to zero, which was 12% of the approximately $4.3 million he got in 2018, according to Salary.com data from the company’s proxy statement.
- United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz will also forgo salary, which in 2018 was $1.25 million of his total $10.5 million compensation.
- Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson will not be getting a salary for the remainder of the year while the company has furloughed tens of thousands of workers. In 2018, Sorenson’s salary was $1.3 million—10%—of his $12.9 million yearly compensation, according to the company’s proxy statement.
- Columbia Sports CEO Tim Boyle reportedly cut his salary to $10,000 per year from a reported $3.3 million.
Background: The onslaught of social distancing and closure of non-essential businesses has hit the travel economy hard. Losses to this economy are predicted to reach up to $24 billion, according to Tourism Economics quoted by CNBC. In the wake of coronavirus, a record 3.3 million Americans have filed for unemployment, and economists predict this number could rise to an unprecedented 47 million or 32.1% unemployment rate across the nation.