Lean Bonus Season Ahead for Wall Street Bankers

With unemployment still high, late mortgage payments rising, and the number of Americans in poverty at record levels, it seems that Main Street is headed for a hard, cold holiday season. But, somewhat surprisingly, so too are the fat cats of Wall Street -- relatively speaking.

This May Be the Best Way to Put CEO Pay in Perspective

To wrap your head around how much someone like Larry Ellison makes, try comparing his compensation to the median income of an American household, $49,777. His 2008 take of $543 million is the equivalent the annual earnings of 10,908 average American families.

The Hidden Cost of Big Wall Street Bonuses to Society

Though most Americans wish that Congress would rein in excessive pay on Wall Street, that won't happen while the huge campaign contributions keep flowing. And the financial industry's big money shell game drains away something more precious from our society than money -- it siphons off talent.

Banks Consider Changing Bonus Schedule to Avoid Tax Hike

Wall Street banks are considering changing the timing of their annual bonuses in a bid to avoid possible tax increases. Lawmakers in Washington are currently discussing whether to renew the Bush-era tax cuts on the wealthiest Americans, a bracket that includes many on Wall Street. If the tax cuts expire, that will mean higher rates in 2011.

Goldman Sachs Promotes Hundreds of Employees

Goldman Sachs Group (GS) promoted a record number of employees to the position of managing director, giving them more money and prestige as the bank rebounds from the financial crisis. The bank raised 321 people to the status of MD, up from 272 last year, Bloomberg News reported. Earlier this week, the company selected 110 people to become partners, giving them access to a special compensation pool.

Bank of America May Pay Employee Bonuses in Stock

As Bank of America continues to cope with fallout from the housing and mortgage crisis, the financial institution may have to pay some year-end employee bonuses in the form of stock because of a possible cash shortfall related to its buy-back of stock from the federal government.

Wall Street Traders May See Smaller Bonuses This Year

Wall Street traders, usually among the best-paid employees in the industry, may see drastic cuts in their take-home pay, Bloomberg News said. Revenue in trading divisions has fallen by an average of 12% so far this year. Goldman Sachs (GS), which makes most of its money from trading, saw average compensation drop 26% in the first nine months of this year.

Wall Street Compensation to Hit New High

Pay on Wall Street is on pace to break a record high for a second consecutive year, growing 4% in 2010 at nearly three dozen of the top financial institutions.

Goldman Sachs May Strip 60 Executives of Partnership

Goldman Sachs (GS) may strip as many as 60 executives of their partnerships this year to make way for new executives in a process known as "de-partnering." Only 375 or so of Goldman%u2019s 35,000 employees are partners, The New York Times reported. Winning partnership can be seen as a ticket to permanent success, with former partners including former Treasury Secretaries Henry Paulson and Robert Rubin.

Wall Street Bonuses Jump 19% in 2009

While Main Street struggles, Wall Street uncorks the chompers. Its employees saw their bonuses increase by 17% in 2009, according to new estimates. But there's a hitch: Bonuses for top executives will come in stock options and other forms of deferred compensation -- not cash.

Rocker Billy Bragg Declares War on Banker Bonuses

Rabble-rousing musician Billy Bragg is urging U.K. citizens to withhold their taxes unless the government stops the Royal Bank of Scotland from awarding $2.4 billion in bonuses to its bankers. After a bailout, RBS is now government owned.

Tears for JP Morgan? Not Likely

The CEO defends the bank's bounteous bonuses by talking about how hard his employees work. But wouldn't everyone -- including American taxpayers -- be better off if JP Morgan plowed most of that bonus pool back into reserves against future losses?

How Goldman Sachs Made Bank in 2009

2009 was a good year for financial titan Goldman Sachs (GS). Despite the downtrodden economy, Goldman managed to log a stellar performance, which will yield a record bonus payout of $23 billion to its workers. We certainly helped CEO Lloyd Blankfein and his greed crusaders with $52 billion in low-cost government financing. And let's not forget that Goldman was a huge beneficiary of ailing insurer American International Group's (AIG) bailout. When the Federal Reserve agreed to pay AIG's counterparties in full, Goldman pocketed a $12.9 billion check -- 100 cents on the dollar -- for its credit default swaps. But a perusal of Goldman's financial statements also reveals that it made big bucks in 2009 by trading commodities, currencies, bonds, and stocks.

Will Banking Giants Flee London?

First the U.K. slapped a new tax on bankers' bonuses, and now the banks are slapping back by threatening to take their business elsewhere. If the banks follow through, London could lose its strong position as one of the world's leading financial centers. The banks' move also shows that if the governments around the world truly want to get control over the risks the banks take, they'll need to work together and find a global solution.

Goldman Sachs' giant bonus PR headache

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) faces a gargantuan public relations headache when it reports third quarter results Wednesday. Investors will be angry...