Among the 20 largest U.S. real estate investment trusts by market capitalization, 16 reported an increase year over year in their CEO-to-employee pay ratios at the end of 2021, according to an S&P Global Market Intelligence analysis.
Additionally, 11 of the 20 REITs analyzed reported a year-over-year increase in median employee salary.
CEO pay ratios and median employee compensation are collected by Market Intelligence on an as-reported basis from the proxy document filed by each company for the year 2021.
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Sun Communities tops CEO pay ratios among largest REITs
Manufactured home-focused Sun Communities Inc. had the highest CEO pay ratio of the group for 2021, at 776-to-1, up from the 572-to-1 reported the year earlier. The REIT’s median employee compensation in 2021 was $32,037.
Communications REIT American Tower Corp., the largest REIT by market capitalization, followed next, disclosing a CEO pay ratio of 428-to-1, while self-storage REIT Public Storage ranked third with a CEO pay ratio of 360-to-1.
On the other end of the spectrum, industrial REIT Duke Realty Corp. reported the smallest CEO pay ratio of the group, at 64-to-1. Duke Realty also ranked second with respect to median employee compensation for 2021 at $148,012.
Office REIT Alexandria Real Estate Equities Inc. reported the highest median employee compensation of the group for 2021, at $176,113, and had the second-lowest CEO pay ratio at 72-to-1.
16 of 20 largest REITs report YOY increases in CEO pay ratios
Despite having the second-lowest CEO pay ratio of the group, Alexandria Real Estate reported the largest year-over-year increase in its CEO pay ratio, jumping 166.7% from the 27-to-1 reported for 2020.
Public Storage had the second-largest increase in its CEO pay ratio, more than double the 172-to-1 reported the year prior.
Only four REITs in the group reported smaller CEO pay ratios year over year.
Industrial REIT Prologis Inc. disclosed a CEO pay ratio of 218-to-1 for 2021, down 33.9% from the 330-to-1 reported for 2020.
Communications REIT SBA Communications Corp. reported an 18.1% drop in its CEO pay ratio at 104-to-1, while datacenter REIT Equinix Inc. and communications-focused Crown Castle Inc. also reported lower CEO pay ratios year over year.