Companies won an average 90% level of shareholder support for the compensation of their CEOs and other top executives in say-on-pay voting this year through June 30, said a Towers Watson report released Wednesday based on the findings of 2,168 companies in the Russell 3000.
The support level was the same as all of last year.
In all, 50 companies failed to achieve a majority vote in support of their executive pay, down from 58 companies for all of 2013.
Broken out by level of support, 73% of companies won at least 90% of the vote in support of their executive compensation; 18% won between 70% and just less than 90% support; 7% won between 50% and just under 70% support; and 2% failed to win at least 50% in support. All were the same as last year.
S&P 500 companies received an average 91% vote in support of their executive pay, up from 90% last year.
Only 1% of S&P 500 companies failed to win a majority of shareholder support on their executive pay, improved from a 2% failure rate last year.
The report found that “high pay levels can trigger increased scrutiny and opposition.”
Companies with high-pay opportunities above the 67th percentile level were 2.5 times as likely to receive shareholder support below the 70% level in 2014, compared to companies with low-pay opportunities, the report said.