Tesla Workers Would Have To Work At Least 1,000 Years Just To Earn What Elon Musk Did In 2018

01 October 2019
Culture, Business, Technology, News, Elon Musk, Tesla, Spacex
Image: Getty

A new report indicates Musk takes home 40,668 times a median worker’s income per year

Just recently, Australia’s list of top-earning CEOs was announced and with it came the shocking information that Alan Joyce makes 270 times the amount of the average full-time Aussie worker’s weekly wage.

The report, compiled by the Australian Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI), found that the Qantas boss pocketed a staggering $23 million in 2018. While the rest of us battle wage stagnation and rising living expenses, the exorbitant sum was enough to make your eyes water. But it pales in comparison to the wage disparity that occurs in America’s top companies.

Across the pond, the USA battles serious issues with regards to pay gaps. As Fast Company reports, Walmart’s CEO makes 1,076 times what some of the company’s workers make in a year. But that’s nothing compared to Elon Musk, who earned more than $US2.28 billion from Tesla in 2018, including his salary, stock options, stock appreciation, and other perks. While Musk might be cheering, Tesla workers certainly aren’t. With the median Tesla worker salary valued at $US56,163, it means Musk is pocking 40,668 times that of the average worker’s income per year.

To put that in perspective: a Tesla employee would have to work at least 1,000 years to make what their CEO did in just one year.

According to the report published in the Institute for Policy Studies, titled Executive Excess 2019: Making Corporations Pay for Big Pay Gaps, the second biggest CEO to median worker pay gap occurs at internationally renowned retail company Abercrombie & Fitch. There, CEO Fran Horowitz-Bonadies makes 3,660 times the salary of the median worker. Following this are Gap, Mattel, and Align Technology which all present salary disparities greater than 3,100 to one.

The issue is one that is being heralded as the key driver of inequality and as Sara Anderson, the report’s key author, said in an interview with Fast Company, “It’s really a systemic problem.” According to Anderson, the problem is not merely confined to the U.S. alone but also prevalent in other countries where employers get away with cheaper wages.

It’s certainly something we’re seeing here in Australia. The Australian Bureau of Statistics placed Australia’s average full-time wage at $85,010. However if the earnings of our top CEOs prove anything, it’s that theirs is a median wage of $4.5 million.

As one Twitter user so articulately put it, “CEO pay now at obscene levels, while most workers experience record low wage growth and #wagetheft is rampant.”

Similarly, the pay gap remains an issue for women, who have to work an additional three months just to earn what the average white man earned at the end of the previous year, according to Forbes.

Perhaps now is the time to be transparent about pay. Whether you’re a man, woman, CEO or casual employee, talking about what you’re getting paid is a means of taking steps to close the wage gap. If we don’t open up the conversation, there is no measure of inequality and no discourse to affect change.Via 


Via GQ Australia