There are two classes of London bankers. The first works for a state-owned bank, the second works in the private sector. Both, ostensibly do the same job. But, their pay structures are quite different.
Chirantan Barua, senior analyst at Bernstein Research has crunched the numbers and come up with a chart that shows the divergence in pay structures between RBS, which is 81 percent government-owned and Barclays,which has no government ownership.
While 428 employees at Barclays earn more than £1 million ($1.48 million), just 93 RBS employees earn above that threshold. Fifty five Barclays employees earn more than £2.5 million ($3.7 million), compared to just 11 for RBS.
And things are set to get worse for RBS staff. According to the State Aid rules approved by the European Commission, bailed-out banks will be forced to cap total remuneration for staff. From August 1, total remuneration cannot exceed 15 times the national average salary in the member state where the beneficiary is incorporated or 10 times the wages of the average worker at the bank.
(Read More: EU Moves to Curb Executive Pay at Bailed-Out Banks)
Based on average wages in the U.K. of £28,740, executive pay at RBS will be capped at £431,000. There's little doubt that the wage caps are likely to further pressure bank executives to seek an exit from state-ownership.
By Deep Bagchee; follow him on twitter: @DeepBagchee