With the agonizing process of determining what the best of the worst should be paid this year behind him, the Pay Czar offered up some thoughts on the process this time around and what the future holds for the executives lucky enough to have their names come across his desk. Even though he "wouldn't begin to say how much money you should make on Wall Street", KF was able to say how much money you should expect at a bailed out bank on Wall Street. In fact, he was pretty precise about it. So you'd think the master of compensation numbers would have some detailed, specific words of wisdom for the future.
"I do hope there will be some broader impact beyond these seven companies. That remains to be seen," said Kenneth Feinberg, the Treasury's special master for compensation, during an appearance in Washington.
OK. Maybe the guy is a slow starter. How about a thorough explanation of the need for a better alignment of interests when it comes to compensation?
"Tying executive pay to the long-term financial wherewithal of the company is a good thing," he said
Still keeping it short and sweet. People are on the verge of rioting in the streets to express their general outrage at the pay levels at financial services organizations. This is clearly a hot button issue. Ken Feinberg, you must have something good in store to encourage firms to pay their people responsibly.
"The other final hope is that private, corporate America will see what's coming out...maybe there'll be some private, voluntary effort," he said.
Let's focus on the future. People are so sick and tired of hearing about bailouts and economic hardship. The real question is when will we finally be rid of TARP once and for all.
"Then we turn to 2010: you're still under [the Troubled Asset Relief Program] we start all over again," Mr. Feinberg said, suggesting some of the seven firms will be under the government's thumb "for many, many years."
Based on everything you've outlined so far, is there an easy way to summarize what you believe these plans will provide for the firms involved?
Pay Czar Says Compensation Cuts Weren't Vindictive [WSJ]