The TSR ranking, developed by remuneration consultants Egan Associates, looked at total investment return for each security in the year to June 30, 2015, and found little correlation between pay and performance.

The average pay packet for a top 300 CEO is now $3 million, or more than 50 times the average Australian salary.

Worst performers

At the other end of the scale, the list of companies that delivered the worst TSRs is dominated by resource companies pummelled by the drop in commodity prices. The price of Australia’s leading mineral export, iron ore, has plummeted 45 per cent since January.

BC Iron and its managing director, Morgan Ball, sits at the bottom of the TSR rankings for the top 300 CEOs. The miner  has been smashed by the drop in iron ore prices with shares dropping to 20.8¢ on Wednesday from $3.46 on July 30, 2014. Mr Ball took home a relatively modest pay packet of $999,542, making him the 260th highest paid CEO.

Mining contractor NRW Holdings and its chief executive, Julian Pemberton, was ranked second-worst for TSR. Mr Pemberton earned $1,490,031 making him the 181st highest-paid CEO.

NRW Holdings shares closed at 9.1¢ on Wednesday, down from $1.11 in late July 2014. The company remains locked in a legal battle with Korean construction giant Samsung C&T over $25 million owing from a key contract at Gina Rinehart’s Pilbara Roy Hill mine.

Struggling mining and steel group  Arrium and its CEO, Andrew Roberts, was rated as third-worst when it came to TSR. Mr Roberts earned $1,565,081 making him the 173rd highest-paid CEO.

Shareholders have taken notice of the company’s performance with Arrium receiving a first strike against its remuneration report last month as shareholders attacked the company for its history of destroying value.

Other companies at the bottom of the list when it came to TSR included Tiger Resources, Horizon Oil and Lynas Corp.

The analysis excluded vanadium miner Atlantic whose shares have been suspended since February 9, 2014. Chief executive Michael Minosora earned $934,877 despite the ongoing suspension, a rise from from $700,000 in the previous year and making him the 276th highest-paid chief executive.