Across Europe, the number of bank employees remained stable in 2019 with annual earnings of more than 1 million euros.

But in Germany it has risen by 9.3 percent to 492 people.

As the remuneration statistics published by the EU banking supervisory authority Eba on Wednesday show, the highest-earning employee of German credit institutions earned 16.2 million euros.

Of this, the overwhelming majority of 12.7 million euros was attributable to variable components, i.e. performance-related bonuses.

Behind them are two other top earners who could look forward to a double-digit million salary.

Markus Frühauf

Editor in business.

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Eba, based in Paris, attributes the fact that the number of top earners in Germany has increased to the relocation of banking business from Great Britain to continental Europe in the wake of Brexit.

Much business was transferred from London to Frankfurt, primarily from American banks such as JP Morgan or Goldman Sachs. In addition to Germany, the number of top earners in France rose from 15.4 percent to 270 and in Italy by 17 percent to 241 .

In Europe it remained almost unchanged at 4,963 people.

London banker receives 65 million euros

The reporting year 2019 includes the UK as a banking location for the last time in the analysis of EU supervision. There, the best-earning employee even got an annual salary of almost 65 million euros. Five other bank managers earned more than 20 million euros in 2019. Overall, the figures also show that the banks in London are the best reward for their top staff. There the number of income millionaires decreased slightly by 95 to 3519 people. But of the total remuneration of top earners, which according to Eba amounted to around 9.9 billion euros in 2019, 7.3 billion euros went to Great Britain alone.

In second place is Germany by a large margin. Here the top bankers received 852 million euros. Behind are France with 467 million euros, Italy with 419 million euros and Spain with 375 million euros. The total remuneration in Europe in 2019 was divided into 4.3 billion euros for a fixed salary and 5.6 billion euros for bonuses. According to Eba, the ratio of variable to fixed remuneration has decreased from 139 to 129 percent compared to 2018.

As in previous years, investment bankers working in the capital markets earn the most. Their 2535 top executives received total remuneration of almost 5 billion euros in 2019, of which 2.7 billion euros came from bonuses. The 891 managers active on the board received almost 2 billion euros, 985 million euros of which were bonuses. In the past few years, the income opportunities in asset management have improved significantly. The 516 top earners working here were rewarded with 1.1 billion euros. Of this, 848 million euros were accounted for by bonuses, which Eba sees critically. Because the ratio in asset management decreased from 378 to 339 percent between 2018 and 2019, but it is still well above the high of 200 percent.

Bonus payments have been the target of stricter conditions since the financial crisis in 2008. Part of the premiums promised for a financial year must be withheld for several years in order to ensure that the business does not lead to losses later.

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