In contrast to prevailing expectations, Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman yesterday ordered his ministry officials and the Israel Securities Authority to formulate a law to cap executive pay at publicly traded companies.

Until yesterday, the prevailing opinion had been that the committee he is heading, that is examining the issue of executive pay at public companies, would avoid legislation. It would at most recommend that supervision over executive pay be stepped up, observers thought.

Yet yesterday, Neeman gave officials at the Justice Ministry and the ISA one week to submit legislative proposals. Their proposals will be submitted to the ministerial committee Neeman is heading and to the finance and industry ministries, and to the Prime Minister's Office.

Neeman's committee is not expected to support the legislative proposals of Shelly Yachimovich and Haim Katz, which would cap pay at public companies at 50 times the lowest salary at the company.