Back in August, the Big Four firm’s report for FTSE 100 companies revealed a 19% decrease in chief executives’ average basic salary to £3.5m.
Finance directors for FTSE 250 firms saw their average basic salary fall by 4%, but their total pay package rose by 5%.
Shareholders have been said to be pushing back, however, as 15% of FTSE 250 companies that have held AGMs received the support of less than 80% of shareholders.
The Big Four firm also found 56% of companies in the index required chief directors to hold shares with a value of 200%. Last year, only 40% of companies required this.
“In the 2017 AGM season, proxy voting recommendations and voting outcomes have demonstrated that shareholders are holding FTSE 250 companies to the same standard as larger FTSE 100 companies,” said Deloitte reward partner Mitul Shah.
Shah added that while many FTSE 250 companies were taking steps to meet the expectations of shareholders in terms of remuneration arrangements, the outcomes of the 2017 AGM season could surprise some.
“The cautious and restrained approach taken by FTSE 100 companies does not appear to have filtered through to all FTSE 250 companies. Shareholders have left this minority of companies in no doubt that the spotlight is also on them,” he said.
Bonus opportunity at FTSE 250 firms remained static, but the report showed the index’s were offering bigger rewards to chief executives through long-term incentive plans that could reach as high as 200% of their salary.
Despite the pushback from shareholders, companies within the index were said to have made “significant efforts” to increase transparency on pay, with the number of companies providing a full range of financial targets to determine bonus outcomes increasing from 48% to 59% this year.