Rugby World Cup Stars Salaries vs. Bankers Salaries

We've all been watching the 2015 Rugby World Cup, but few of us know how well the players on our screens are paid. This week we at Emolument asked ourselves how the salaries of Rugby World Cup stars compare to holding down a senior finance job in the city.

Role Total Salary Rugby or City?
Dan Carter (NZ) 1,000,000 Rugby
Matt Giteau (AUS) 900,000 Rugby
MD in Trading 900,000 City
MD in M&A 510,000 City
Bryan Habana(SA) 474,000 Rugby
Jamie Roberts(WAL) 380,000 Rugby
Hedge Fund Trader 172,000 City
Director in Asset Management 160,000 City
Average Premiership Rugby 70,000 Rugby
Entry Level Analyst (Investment Banking) 55,000 City

Finance salaries come out on top: While the very top rugby players still have the edge over most bankers salaries, the average player in the English Rugby Premiership earns only 70,000 - much less than a hedge fund trader annual salary or asset manager with a similar amount of experience, who can expect 160,000-172,000 as annual fixed pay.

Combine the two: Perhaps the answer is to go for the best of both worlds, like Cobus Visagie. Visagie enjoyed a successful rugby career as a tight-head prop, including 29 caps for South Africa, before quitting the sport in 2009 and going into finance to set up an investment fund. He notes that rugby and investing are in some ways similar: they both require a game plan.

Football Still King: All the salaries on the list are dwarfed by those of top-earning footballers, with Lionel Messi on 34 million and Cristiano Ronaldo on 35 million. The average footballer in the English Premier League, meanwhile, earns 43,717... per week! Clearly rugby has some catching up to do.

Source for rugby salaries: The Telegraph: World Rugby's Richlist

Source for football salaries: Mail Online - Premier League wages dwarf those around Europe; Forbes: The World's Highest Paid Celebrities

Financial pay data based on 430 UK finance professionals from


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