Bonus Watch '15: Wall Street Basically Living Paycheck To Paycheck Now

In an unimaginable nightmare from which no one can wake, bonuses grew a mere 2% last year.
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Many will be forced to take second and third jobs just to put food on the table. Others will be forced to become sex workers by night. All will be forced to ask themselves, "What's become of my life?" and "How did I get here?"

Wall Street bonuses just aren’t what they used to be. As the industry’s profits declined, the average bonus for Wall Street employees grew just 2 percent in 2014, to $172,860, according to a report on Wednesday by Thomas P. DiNapoli, the New York State comptroller. Although still large by many standards, these bonuses grew far more slowly than in the previous two years.

Wall Street Bonuses Rose Just 2% Last Year [Dealbook]

Related

Bonus Watch '12: Half Of Wall Street Feeling Pretty Positive About Pay Day

Now that we're nearly halfway through October, several items on your to-do list will have undoubtedly been upgraded in urgency: scouring Starbucks near and far for for Pumpkin Spice lattes before it's too late, and being dead serious in telling the baristas at the various locations claiming unavailability that they've ruined your life; coming up with a Halloween costume that's at once slutty and topical; and discussing bonus expectations. Despite the fact that bank CEOs and people who speak on their behalf have suggested (by saying outright) that pay will come down this year, and that anyone who still has a job in 3-4 months should consider that their bonus, some on Wall Street are apparently predicting they'll do pretty well for themselves this year and very well circa 2015. There seems to be a disconnect between what Wall Street execs have been reading lately and what they believe. Nearly half (48%) of them surveyed by eFinancialCareers expect their bonus to be higher this year despite recent news reports to the contrary...Of those who believe bonuses will increase in the next three years, over half (53%) are convinced bonuses will return to 2006-2007 levels. For those not as confident their take-home will soon revert back to the glory days and looking to make a change into a more lucrative field Bloomberg today notes that "welders top banking pay."* Despite news reports that Wall Street bonuses will be down, more Wall Streeters are expecting them to be higher [eF] Wall Street to Cut Pay Instead of Jobs, Graseck Says [BW] Caterpillar’s Worker Hunt Means Welders Top Banking Pay [Bloomberg] Related: Layoffs/Bonus Watch '12/'13: Morgan Stanley *...Though not until 15th paragraph is it noted that they're actually talking about 'bank tellers,' which seems less than helpful to the audience.

Bonus Watch '08: Goldman Sachs

Bonuses paid in '08 that were of the look-but-don't-touch variety were turned into real live ones that you can buy things with last year. Two billion dollars worth of live ones.

Layoffs/Bonus Watch '12/13: Morgan Stanley

Back in January, Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman sent a simple messages to his employees, who had been grumbling about their pay: STFU or GTFO. "You're naive, read the newspaper, No.1," Gorman told Bloomberg he would say to any members of his staff that wanted to give him lip about their compensation to his face. "No. 2, if you put your compensation in a one-year context to define your over all level of happiness, you have a problem which is much bigger than this job. And No. 3, if you're really unhappy, just leave." Today, in an interview with the FT, Gorman reiterated his stance and added that in addition to reducing compensation for current employees, the bank will likely be drastically cutting pay for future analysts. If anyone has a problem with that, consider applying for a gig at Bank of Mythical Pre-Crisis Era Bonuses. Alternatively, Gorman is happy to discuss a compensation plan in which you'll be awarded shares of his foot in your ass, which vest immediately. In the latest sign of the pressure Wall Street is under to cut costs and address high pay levels, James Gorman, chief executive, said that staff and remuneration would have to be sacrificed as banks cope with lower profits. “There’s way too much capacity and compensation is way too high,” Mr Gorman said in an interview with the Financial Times. “As a shareholder I’m sort of sympathetic to the shareholder view that the industry is still overpaid.” Morgan Stanley itself is already axing 4,000 jobs, 7 per cent of its workforce, by the end of this year. In the new year, Mr Gorman said, the bank will consider its next round of cost-cutting, including lower pay and bonuses. News of further pay cuts, including potentially for new entrants at the investment bank, comes just weeks after Goldman Sachs confirmed it was overhauling its well-known entry-level programme for analysts. Goldman was said to have tired of the number of analysts in the programme who left the bank for hedge funds. Mr Gorman said that Morgan Stanley will probably keep its own analyst programme, but pay could be reduced significantly. Morgan Stanley Chief Warns On Wall Street Pay [FT] Earlier: James Gorman To Employees: STFU Or GTFO

Bonus Watch '12: Now With Less Cash

According to "revenue compensation trends," though good vibes and happy thoughts could prove them wrong. Wall Street’s cash bonus pool is likely to fall for a second straight year as the financial industry grapples with market turmoil, economic weakness and new rules, New York state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said. Revenue and compensation trends have “edged downward” since February, when DiNapoli estimated that the 2011 pool for Wall Street declined by 13.5 percent to $19.7 billion, the comptroller said today in a report. “Based on those trends, the total cash bonus pool for work performed in 2012 is likely to decline for a second year in a row,” DiNapoli said in a statement. The last time the pool shrank for two consecutive years was in 2007 and 2008, at the beginning of the global financial crisis, according to the comptroller’s office. Wall Street Bonus Pool Seen Shrinking for Second Straight Year [Bloomberg]