Chinese banks saw a rise in remuneration levels in 2018 in tandem with staff cuts on the back of greater fintech adoption.
19 out of 32 A-share banks in China have released their annual reports for 2018, with a report from www.stcn.com further indicating that the total remuneration expenditures of 14 banks for which comparable data is available was 62.285 million yuan in 2018, for YoY growth of 6.7%.
13 out of the 14 banks saw their total remuneration spending increase in 2018, with the exception of China CITIC Bank which posted a YoY decline of 8%.
China Merchants Bank, Ping An Bank and Bank of Ningbo provided the highest average remuneration levels at 585,000 yuan, 528,000 yuan and 484,000 yuan respectively, while they also saw the biggest increases in total remuneration spending, at 21.2%, 17.1% and 12.4% respectively.
2018 was the second consecutive year that total remuneration expenditures of Chinese banks have seen broad increases, with some domestic observers speculating that traditional lenders are striving to prevent staff from shifting to non-bank financial institutions.
Chinese banks are also shedding staff as they push for further adoption of fintech and automate a greater range of operations including teller staff.
China’s big six state-owned banks shed a total of 28,000 staff in 2018, with Agricultural Bank of China and China Construction Bank retrenching 13,600 and 7,500 employees respectively.
ICBC, Bank of Communications, Bank of China and Postal Savings Bank of China shed 3752, 1371, 1014 and 742 workers respectively.