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JC Penney CEO Earned 1,800 Times an Average Cashier, Other CEOs Not Much Better

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Bloomberg recently released the pay difference between America's CEOs and the lowest paid employees in the company, revealing a startling difference that has risen 1,000 percent since 1950.

On the top of the list for the biggest pay difference is JC Penney, with CEO Ron Johnson leaving with a $53.3 million compensation deal, nearly 1,800 times the $29,688 per year earned by the company's cashiers.

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On average, Bloomberg found that CEOs make 204 times the salary of an entry-level employee.

But the top ten companies on the list revealed a much bigger pay difference. With large retail-based companies employing more minimum wage workers, there is a larger gap between the bottom and top of the corporate ladder.

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Abercrombie and Fitch followed JC Penney, with CEO Michael Jeffries earning $48.1 million in 2012 and an average worker earning $29,310 a year.

It is also apparent in financial and technology companies, like Simon Property Group and Oracle Group, where average workers make $86,033 a year and CEOs David Simon and Larry Ellison earn $137.2 million and $96.2 million, respectively. 

In fifth place was Starbucks, with baristas earning $25,463 a year plus benefits and CEO Howard Schultz making $28.9 million.

They responded to the report, saying, "Howard's pay reflects both competitive considerations and the unique value of his leadership, demonstrated in our record 2012 results and 38 percent total shareholder return."

"Our baristas receive a comprehensive benefits package, including health coverage and company stock for eligible partners, that can be worth up to three times that offered by other retail companies."

The increase in CEO pay has made a dramatic upturn form 1950, where CEOs made 20 times the salary of average workers, and in 1980 they earned 42 times as much. In 2000, it was up to 120 times as much, and now, it is up to 200 and higher. 

Sources: Daily Mail, Bloomberg