Top payout for boss at Persimmon

The outgoing boss of the housebuilder Persimmon racked up a maximum bonus of more than £1m last year, the company's annual report showed yesterday.

Mike Farley, who retires next month after 30 years at the business, earned the payout after the builder raised pre-tax profits by 52 per cent to £225.1m last year.

The result triggered a maximum bonus of 150 per cent of salary – £1.02m, of which £678,800 was in cash. The reward pushed up his overall package from £1.86m to £1.93m in 2012. He will also be allowed to keep 966,400 shares under a lucrative long-term incentive scheme which kicks in if the company can return £1.9bn to shareholders by 2021.

Persimmon, whose Charles Church family homes are in strongest demand, has pushed its forward sales past the £1bn mark in 2013 for the first time since the pre-credit crunch days of 2007. Along with other housebuilders, it is gaining from the Funding for Lending scheme and initiatives to help first-time buyers with deposits.