Looking at Wall Street right now, you would never know that we just came out of a recession. And it is worth noting that for most regular folks, the end of the recession is merely a technical economic detail. Individuals still face a number of financial challenges, and with the weak labor market, it is little surprise that things most of Main Street is still wonder whether things are going to pick up. For thousands of Wall Street folks, though, that is not much of an issue. They just found out that they will be enjoying record bonuses.
Wall Street firms prepare to pay $30 billion in bonuses
Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase and Morgan Stanley all received taxpayer help, and made the news due to bonus programs last year — which were enabled in part by the taxpayer help. Now it appears that Wall Street is ready for more. The bonuses are expected to surpass the last high, reached in 2007, before the financial market collapse, of $26.8 billion. And it really doesn’t matter what anyone says. Bloomberg reports on what seems to be the prevailing attitude on Wall Street:
“Wall Street is beginning to resemble Clark Gable as Rhett Butler in the film ‘Gone With the Wind’: ‘Quite frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn,’” Paul Hodgson, a senior research associate on compensation at the Portland, Maine-based Corporate Library, said in an e-mail. “It doesn’t seem as if even political threat, disastrous PR, envy, rising unemployment rates and home repossessions is enough to get any of these people to refuse the bonuses they have ‘earned.’”
Clearly, Wall Street has policy makers nicely sewn up, and populist outrage doesn’t affect Wall Street because it clearly does little to prompt lawmakers to take action. So, while thousands stand in unemployment lines this holiday season, it will be little comfort to know that their Wall Street counterparts are enjoying record bonuses.
Image source: Fletcher6 via Wikimedia Commons
Post from: EveryJoe