HSBC’s Gulliver faces opposition over planned £13.3m package

HSBC ’s proposal to pay its chief executive up to £13.3m this year is likely to meet shareholder opposition, investor representatives said yesterday.

The bank’s compensation committee has proposed paying Stuart Gulliver a base salary of £1.25m, a bonus of up to three times that and a long-term performance-based payout six times his base salary.

Sarah Wilson, chief executive of proxy voting agency Manifest said there was “a high level of concern” among shareholders and “a great deal of push back” was expected.

The proposed sum is still subject to several rounds of shareholder consultation and a revised figure will be put to HSBC’s annual general meeting in May.

But the payout dwarfs RBS chief executive Stephen Hester’s £7.7m payout and Barclays head Bob Diamond’s £6.25m this year.

HSBC’s return to pre-financial crisis levels of remuneration at a time when the economy is struggling could place banks on a collision course with the public and government. But its negotiations may be a sign that large banks are gearing up to reward their top staff far more, which may cause more boardroom battles this year, Wilson warned.