When it comes to the four major sectors of the financial market -- banks, insurers, brokerages and credit card companies -- executives accounted for 2,969 of the 23,595 employees as of the end of June, or 1.3 percent, according to the Financial Information Statistics System of the market watchdog Financial Supervisory Service.
The corresponding figure for banks was the lowest, as only 0.4 percent or 536 out of 12,200 bank employees reached the president or vice president level.
Of the top five lenders, NH NongHyup Bank had the tightest competition, with only 0.1 percent of employees in executive roles. Other banks -- Shinhan, Woori, KEB Hana and KB -- fell in the 0.2-0.4 percent range.
The industry average for banks was lower than that for major conglomerates, where the promotion ladder is known to be steep.
At Samsung Electronics, the proportion of board members stood at 1 percent of total staff numbers, with 1,052 of 10,555 employees serving on the board. Hyundai Motor, LG Electronics and SK hynix were next with 0.7-0.8 percent.
The proportion of executives to employee totals was higher in nonbank financial sectors such as credit card operators, insurers and brokerages -- 1.2 percent, 1.9 percent and 3.1 percent, respectively, on average.
Of the major group-affiliated brokerages, it was Mirae Asset Daewoo that had the highest ratio of board members to employees with 2.3 percent, while Shinhan Investment came last with 0.9 percent.
Among small and medium-sized individual brokerages, Baro Financial Network and Leading Investment & Securities were at the top of the range with 32.1 percent and 31.9 percent, respectively.
For asset managers, where individual companies tend to be smaller, executives accounted for 21.2 percent of all employees, or 1,865 out of 8,794, the data showed.
In the case of investment advisers, executives comprised 55.1 percent of staff, with 646 out of 1,172 employees serving as board members. Of these, 26 firms consisted entirely of executives.
By Bae Hyun-jung (firstname.lastname@example.org)