There are still fewer female CEOs than male…

The Italian stock index FTSE MIB counts 40 companies, none of which are led by a female CEO. Five of them are led by men with the first name of Paulo. In a twist from Morningstar Cont Given the underrepresentation of women among European fund managers, this time we see a shockingly skewed gender balance in CEO positions of companies in European stock indices.

On International Women’s Day, we typically learn a number of numbers and percentage breakdowns, from pay inequality to paternity leave. They are certainly empirically sound, but the sheer absurdity of women heading less than 10% of the total number of CEOs in Europe can be best explained by comparing how common male first names are among CEOs.

The least depressing places on this map are Norway, the United Kingdom, and Croatia, where the share of female CEOs is in the double digits and outnumbers Anders, Andrew, and Igor, respectively. France stands out with fewer than three women-owned companies in the CAC 40, surpassing companies led by Benoîts, Bernards and Oliviers.

In Central Europe, meanwhile, we see no bright spots when it comes to the aversion to female leadership. In Germany, only two DAX companies, including Fresenius Medical, are led by women, and there are more male CEOs named Christian than female CEOs. In Switzerland, all 20 companies in the SMI index have men in top positions.

In Poland, two of the 20 largest companies in the WIG index have a female CEO, while none are found in the Czech PX or Hungarian BUX index. However, a fifth of the companies in both Prague and Budapest are led by Johns and Gabors.

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Between today and next year’s International Women’s Day, you can forget that 34% of European company directors are women. We hope you are watching a very poor executive leadership situation and a neck and neck race between the Benoits and literally half the French people.

Ferdinand Woolridge

 "Subtly charming analyst. Beer maven. Future teen idol. Twitter guru. Lifelong bacon fan. Pop culture lover. Passionate social media evangelist."

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