Monday, January 30, 2012

Obama Allows Record Bonuses for Bank CEOs

President Obama takes his orders from Corporate Capitalists
NYC, Jan 30, 2012. The nation’s top six banks (Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs) paid out $144 billion in bonuses and compensation for 2011, which is almost equal to the $147 billion they paid out in 2007 at the height of the economic boom.

Four banks of these banks, Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, and Morgan Stanley, were awarded record high bonuses and compensation.

And this was despite their bleak stock performance during the year. So these guys are getting paid more, for even worse performance than they had when Obama called their bonuses "obscene."

Whatever happened to that campaign promise President Barack Huessein Obama, D-Kenya, made in 2008 when he was running for President that he would "put an end to these obscene bonuses?"

When Barack Obama was campaigning in 2008, and several times since he was elected President, he referred to these "obscene bank bonuses" and vowed he would put an end to them.

President Obama even appointed a Czar for Executive Compensation, Kenneth Feinberg at a salary of $120,830 per year, to guarantee that this wouldn't happen again. But despite all the talk and the appontiment of a special Czar, the "obscene" bonuses are back, and just as obscene as they ever were. And to make matters worse, these CEO's and high level managers are performing worse than they did in 2007.

Kenneth Feinberg, Obama's CEO Compensation Czar
Feinberg was tasked with holding down the executive salaries and bonuses of any company who took federal money under the TARP or other bailout programs. These included big banks, insurance companies,  giant Wall Street brokerage firms, and huge mulinational corporations like GE and GM.

But in March 2009, AIG disbursed $165 million in taxpayer-funded Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) funds to its top executives, prompting a massive public backlash.

Obama officials reportedly lobbied Congress to insert legislative language allowing the AIG bonus payments and then apparently lied about their knowledge of the payment scheme. The meetings at issue in Judicial Watch’s FOIA request took place in November 2009, just weeks after Feinberg publicly announced pay cuts and salary caps for AIG’s top paid executives.

And today we discover that the six largest banks, all of whom took bailout money from the federal government, are now right back to to passing out "obscene bonuses" to their top executives. And in some cases, the bonuses are even bigger than when Obama vowed to put an end to them.

“Even though top bank executives have claimed that bonuses are down as much as 30 percent for 2011, total compensation has not decreased at all,” according to The New Bottom Line’s report, “Pulling Back The Curtain: The 1% Behind The 2011 Big Bank Bonuses.”

Some banks did cut back on their bonuses but compensated for this by increasing base salaries. For example, base salaries for named executive officers at Goldman Sachs more than tripled in 2011. At JPMorgan Chase, named executive officers saw salaries go up 50 percent.

Just half of the banks’ bonus and compensation pools would be enough to write down the principals on all underwater mortgages in the country. 

If the six banks took half of their bonus and compensation pool and put it directly into a public service jobs fund, they could create 1.8 million jobs.

And they would still have enough money left over to pay the average employee $60,605.

Just 72% of the $144 billion in bonuses and compensation at the top six banks would have been enough money to plug the $102.9 billion in budget holes for all 50 states for the current fiscal year.

No comments:

Post a Comment