Quoted on Ignites Asia: More Pay Cuts Likely for Fund Executives

Links International’s very own Keith Wong was recently quoted in an article by Ignites Asia regarding the economic impacts of Covid-19. As the economy takes a nosedive, wages are going to be impacted.

Businesses are feeling the heat as the coronavirus pandemic takes hold of economies around the world. Companies are exploring cost-cutting measures and business executives are under pressure to take wage cuts.

Companies planning to restructure should safeguard their employer brand during this fragile time. For a look into the 2020 market outlook, download our 2020 Asia Salary and Market Insights whitepaper.

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Here’s a snippet from the article “Pay cuts are going to get more common in Asia”, quoting Keith Wong our Recruitment Country Director.


Franklin Templeton CEO Jennifer Johnson and other senior executive committee members have taken a 20% pay cut, although none of this committee is based in Asia. Fidelity said its senior management team, including CEO Anne Richards, will give up a “significant” portion of their 2020 bonus.

Similarly, executives from banking giants HSBC, Standard Chartered and Lloyds Bank have also announced that they will donate the equivalent of millions of pounds due to the ongoing virus situation.

Keith Wong, Country Director HK, SH & SG

Keith Wong, Hong Kong-based country director for Hong Kong, Shanghai and Singapore at recruiting agency Links International, says there are likely to be more salary cuts announced in the region in the second half of the year if the situation worsens.

“Pay cuts are going to get more common in Asia and in Hong Kong if the economy continues this way,” Wong says.

For asset managers, pay cuts are likely to be at least 15% of base salary, in addition to all the bonuses being taken away, and half of a fund executive’s total salary income may be made up of bonuses, Wong says.

But while pay cuts can help alleviate some immediate financial pressure, there is a debate over the extent to which pay cuts taken by senior executives are more of a symbolic move rather than significant material help to a business. The debate is clouded further in Asia as executive pay is not as transparent as in many Western markets.


Read the full article of the effects of coronavirus on fund firms in Hong Kong and Singapore on Ignites Asia.

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