Two-pensions Osorio is such a “charismatic winner” that Lloyds staff don’t mind one bit that he’s paid 169 times more than they are according to the bank. In what can only be described as a the most toe curling moment seen at a Parliamentary hearing, Mr. Stuart Sinclair, Chairman of the Group’s Remuneration Committee, told the Works and Pensions Select Committee meeting yesterday that “When I go out to see people who are on £22,000, £30,000, £40,000, they see Antonio as a winner because he brought this bank back from the brink. There is a charisma around Antonio which means a lot of people say “Good luck to him, he works incredibly hard and I don’t resent the money”.
Mr. Antonio Horta-Osorio, Group Chief Executive and Mr Stuart Sinclair, Chairman of the Group’s Remuneration Committee were appearing in front of a joint meeting of Work and Pensions Select Committee and Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee as a result of the union’s successful campaign to highlight the monstrous differences in pension allowances between LBG’s executive directors and the vast majority of staff.
There is no evidence whatsoever that Mr Sinclair has spoken to any front-line staff to ask how they feel about the fact that Mr Horta-Osorio gets a pension allowance of 33%, (worth £419,000) when the most they can get is 13%. Such a crass, insensitive and clueless statement only confirms how out of touch Mr Sinclair is with the views of Lloyds staff. He needs to come down from his ivory tower and speak to real people across the bank about executive pay and pensions. To suggest that staff can put their views on Hive about Antonio’s pension allowance is naïve. Equally, where is the evidence that staff see Mr Horta-Osorio as “charismatic” or a “winner”, whatever those mean when talking about a CEO? However, Mr Horta-Osorio is certainly a winner in the sense that he’s pocketed over £50 million since he joined Lloyds Banking Group, despite the fact that the share price is worth less now than it was when he took over the bank.
Apples & Pears
In response to a question about greed by Mr Frank Field, Chair of the Work and Pensions Committee, Mr Horta-Osorio said it was: “very difficult to accept the word ‘greed’ …when my total fixed compensation at £2.8 million …is lower than the chief executive of HSBC (who was paid £3.1million in 2018).” Unfortunately, for Mr Horta-Osorio it was the wrong comparison. Mr John Flint, the CEO of HSBC, agreed to his pension being reduced to 10% of his base pay, the same as everyone else in HSBC. Furthermore, HSBC is a truly global bank, which made profits of £15.4 billion in 2018 compared to £6 billion for Lloyds. The correct comparison would have been with the CEO of HSBC’s UK Bank, and he’s paid significantly less than Mr Horta-Osorio, both in terms of base pay and total pay.
As a result of yesterday’s car crash performance, Lloyds is fast becoming synonymous with fat cat pay and excess and that can’t be good for the future of the bank. The Chairman needs to get a grip of this issue and fast.
Members with any questions on this Newsletter can contact the Union’s Advice Team on 01234 262868.