Bonus Watch ’16: Enjoy Your Crumbs

Wall Street profits rose by 21%. Your bonus? Not so much.
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Your share. By Shane Adams from Olathe, KS, USA (The Bucket Aftermath) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Your share. By Shane Adams from Olathe, KS, USA (The Bucket Aftermath) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Congratulations, Dealbreaker readers: Your hard work helped your companies post a 21% jump in profits, in part by doing fewer things that find your employers in court. Your reward: A 1% bump in your bonus. You earned it.

Wall Street profits jumped 21 percent to $17.3 billion in 2016, while average bonuses in New York City's securities industry rose by just 1 percent to $138,210, the state's chief fiscal officer said on Wednesday….

Expenses not tied to employee compensation, including legal settlements, fell by nearly $3.8 billion, or 6.2 percent in 2016.

Wall Street profits rose 21 percent in 2016, bonuses up 1 percent: report [Reuters]

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Bonus Watch '12: Jefferies Has Got Your Cold Hard Cash Right Here

Back in the day, as in pre-crisis, bonus season on Wall Street was a happy time. Sure, you still had your miserable pricks who would bitch and moan about the fact that they hadn't gotten as much as the guy who sat next to them, even they the guy who sat next to them was a "non-contributing zero who wouldn't recognize alpha if it bit him in the ass," but prior to to fall 2008, anyone who was unhappy about his or her bonus was a) quibbling over receiving a huge sum of money instead of an imperial fuck-ton of money and b) in a position to actually make good on a threat to jump ship, since firms were hiring. Now, with a few exceptions, bonus season makes people feel sad. Angry. Impotent. Like the world is out to get them. Not only has the total amount of one's bonus come down, but many companies have decreased the cash portion, while increasing the deferral period on stock to, in some cases, almost half a decade. Then you have Jefferies. Last year it let employees decide between an all stock bonus or an all cash bonus with 25% lopped off.  This year the investment bank-cum-butcher shop isn't even forcing anyone to choose, instead dumping a bag of cash on everyone's desk and reminding them who loves 'em.