Posts Tagged ‘Executive bonuses’

Politics as Usual

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Expert Perspective by Grahall’s OmniMedia Editorial Board

With a sad shake of our heads and an audible sigh we read the article By Jim Puzzanghera and Nathaniel Popper  Pay czar slams bonuses but doesn’t seek refund and agreed that “it’s just politics”.  Clearly our Special Pay Master, Pay Czar, or whatever you care to call him really didn’t have much influence over anything payments made by TARP companies.  The nose thumbing that makes Wall Street universally disliked by Main Street  was this time, clearly directed at Feinberg with them saying, in effect “we don’t damn about how you think we should run our companies.”  And Feinberg blinked.
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A Banker’s “Market” Worth: It’s A Rigged System

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We are angry, rightly so, about the obscene bonuses and pay given to bankers and the financial mandarins who destroyed the economy. Part of the problem is that the political dialogue–parroted by the traditional media and the political leaders who are bought and paid for by the financial industry– never questions a basic premise: that financial institutions have to pay “market rates” to retain “top talent”.

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Goldman Tries to Put a Halo on Bonuses

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Goldman Sachs is doing its best to prove that what’s good for its company is good for the rest of us. But image consultants and corporate-compensation experts say the Wall Street firm’s recent moves won’t quell the growing anger against the world’s most profitable bank.

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Fresh round of Wall Street bonuses rekindles scrutiny

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As resurgent Wall Street banks prepare to hand out billions of dollars in bonuses — their first since returning federal bailout funds — the payments are drawing intense scrutiny from regulators and politicians.
New York Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo sent letters on Monday to the nation’s eight largest banks demanding a detailed account of the bonuses planned for employees.

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Banks Brace for Bonus Fury

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Critics of Wall Street firms are grumbling that this year’s bonuses are far too generous. But some recipients are none too happy, either: They’re complaining too much of the payout is coming in stock instead of cash. Banks and securities firms have told workers their bonuses will contain a bigger percentage of stock to demonstrate that Wall Street is sensitive to public anger over the big paychecks.

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Goldman Sachs Weighs Requirement for Charity

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Published in The New York Time January 11, 2010 by Louise Story

As it prepares to pay out big bonuses to employees, Goldman Sachs is considering expanding a program that would require executives and top managers to give a certain percentage of their earnings to charity.
The move would be the latest in a series of initiatives by Goldman to soften criticism over the size of its bonuses, which are expected to be among the largest on Wall Street, bringing average pay to about $595,000 for each employee — with far higher amounts for top performers.

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US banks braced for bonus backlash

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Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase and other big banks are bracing for a renewed public and political backlash against their compensation plans as they prepare to unveil multi-billion dollar bonus packages.
Under pressure from government, banks are already saying they will devote the smallest percentage of annual revenues in years to their employees.

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Banks Prepare for Bigger Bonuses, and Public’s Wrath

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Published in The New York Times January 10, 2010 by Louise Story and Eric Dash

Everyone on Wall Street is fixated on The Number.
The bank bonus season, that annual rite of big money and bigger egos, begins in earnest this week, and it looks as if it will be one of the largest and most controversial blowouts the industry has ever seen.

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With Bigger Bonuses, Another Upside for Banks

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Published in The New York Times, January 1, 2010 by Lynnley Browning 

Along with Wall Street’s resurgent bonuses will come a jump in an ancillary benefit: tax breaks.
For all banks and Wall Street firms, “I’m sure we’re talking $200 billion total compensation, which would create a tax savings for the firms of $80 billion,” said Robert Willens, an accounting and tax analyst in New York who runs a consulting firm, Robert Willens LLC. The figure does not include bonus plans by hedge funds, which are likely to reduce their payouts after a down year.
The tax deductions, which will increase the bottom line of the banks, are perfectly legal and not new. They come as compensation for 2009 has roared back after the largest banks paid back billions of dollars in federal aid, an outlay still fresh in the minds of taxpayers. As pay goes up, so do the deductions.
Many American banks already pay minuscule federal income taxes, because of various deductions and clever tax planning; the payout-related breaks will reduce their tax bills further in coming years.

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Wall Street’s bonus baby steps

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Published in CNN Money, December 30, 2009 by Collin Barr

So much for Wall Street sobering up.
Under pressure to prevent another meltdown, Goldman Sachs (GS, Fortune 500) and Morgan Stanley (MS, Fortune 500) have been cutting back on cash bonuses and insisting on so-called claw-backs — arrangements that allow companies to reclaim past bonuses when there is employee misconduct.
Yet for all their supposed reform-mindedness, the banks show no sign of pulling the emergency brake on the great compensation escalator.
A year after taxpayers saved the finance industry from collapse, the big banks will hand out billions of dollars in bonuses in the coming weeks — at a time where unemployment tops 10% and many people are still losing their homes to foreclosures. To say this rankles in some quarters is an understatement.

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