Burger flippers in the US make about as much as state bank chiefs in India

Running a state-owned bank in India pays little more than flipping burgers at McDonald's and Burger King outlets in Los Angeles International Airport, where the minimum cash wage is $11.03 an hour. In India, state-run bank chiefs make about $11.40. They do get perks that American wage-earners don't: a car, a driver and free housing. Still, the heads of India's five biggest state-owned banks earn annual salaries and bonuses of Rs 20 lakh to Rs 25 lakh ($32,400 to $40,500), based on the latest data available. That works out on average to about 705 rupees an hour for what bank spokesmen say are 60-hour workweeks that include Saturdays. Their pay is less than five per cent of that at India's private banks, where chief executive officers also earn stock options.
 
"They should be paid more and offered stock options like their peers in the private sector, as they are pulling the same weight," Aditya Narayan Mishra, president of staffing in India for human-resources firm Randstad Holding NV (RAND), said in a phone interview from Bengaluru.

"As state-run banks have to support various government schemes and financial-inclusion efforts, productivity and profit per employee is lower than private-sector banks," Randstad's Mishra said.
 

By the time India's bank employees reach mid-management, the pay at private banks is more than twice that of public-sector salaries, Randstad's Mishra said. The difference continues to widen as rank grows, he said.

"After putting in so many years in the state-run banks' environment, most of them don't want to move out of the comfort zone and let go of the job surety, lifestyle or pension benefits," Mishra said. "Also, many of them would have lost the mindset and skills needed in the private sector."

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