Lloyds Bank says Black employees on average earn nearly 20% less

One of the biggest U.K. banks voluntarily revealed racial pay data Friday.

December 11, 2020, 1:08 PM

Lloyds, one of the largest banks in the U.K., revealed Friday that its Black employees on average make nearly a fifth less than their colleagues.

The bank said in a report Friday that the median average pay difference was 19.7% for Black workers and 15.7% for Asian workers compared with their white counterparts. Meanwhile, the median average pay gap for all Black, Asian and minority ethnic workers compared with white workers was 14.8%.

Moreover, the median bonus gap was 37.6% for Black workers and 34.2% for Asian workers.

Lloyd's attributed these pay gaps to far lower representation of Black and minority workers at senior levels and said that on a mean basis, minority workers at an individual grade are not paid less than their White colleagues.

Lloyds' release of data Friday is part of its Race Action Plan unveiled in July, where the company voluntarily committed to publishing its Ethnicity Pay Gap Report, paving the way for other banks and firms to do the same.

"We’re publishing our data because it is the right thing to do and we’ll continue to share this annually so we can track our progress and continue to take action to narrow the gaps that exist," the company said on its website.

A Lloyds bank sign is pictured outside a branch in central London on March 1, 2013.
Carl Court/AFP via Getty Images, FILE

Lloyd's chief executive Antonio Horta-Osório said that in looking at the data and listening to colleagues, "we recognize that specific groups face difficult and often nuanced challenges in being themselves at work."

"Our Black colleagues remain significantly under-represented at all levels, accounting for just 1.5% of our total workforce and 0.6% of our senior management," he added in a statement.

Horta-Osório pledged that this is "not good enough" and the bank has "resolved to take action."

The CEO added that they have the goal of increasing Black representation in senior roles to at least 3% by 2025. Moreover, they announced a new Black Business Advisory Committee to support Black-led businesses and entrepreneurs to better understand their needs.

Globally, there has been a renewed push for transparency in racial pay data propelled in part by protest over police brutality against Black people in the U.S. Experts have urged that transparency is one of the first steps towards fixing issues of racial pay disparities.

In the U.S., the average wage gap between a Black and white worker in 2019 was 26.5%, according to the Economic Policy Institute.