Kibbutz factory in northern Israel
Kibbutz factory in northern IsraelIsrael news photo: Flash 90

A poll by Israeli business daily Globes released Monday showed that salaries of top-level employees in Israeli companies grew by 18% in 2013 over the previous year. The annual salary of the CEO of a company traded on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange is now NIS 3.5 million (about a million dollars).

The income gap between corporate leaders and workers also grew signifcantly in 2013. At TASE-traded companies with more than 100 employees, the highest-paid officer (often the CEO) earned a salary 41 times higher than the average salary in the company, with their hourly “wage” 117 times the minimum wage. In 2012, the highest paid officer made only 31 times the average worker, and 88 times the minimum wage.

The poll took into account the five years between 2008 and 2013. Between 2011 and 2012, salaries for top personnel were down 23%. Analysts said that the salary reductions that year were due to the major social protests during the summer of 2011, when tens of thousands of Israelis took to the streets to demand a lower cost of living. But apparently the senior staff had managed to restore their salaries to previous levels, now that the protests have stopped, the analysts said.

With that, the study showed, salaries for CEOs were still lower than they had been in 2010, when the average salary was NIS 5 million.