Despite Job Cuts and Losses, Bankers Are Paying Themselves More

A new report says despite 93,000 job cuts, top banks spent billions more on their people last year.


We recently wrote about Wall Street CEO pay and how many people they’re firing.

Now, Reuters reports 35 of the world’s biggest banks spent a combined $13.1 billion more on staff last year than in 2011. That despite cutting 93,000 jobs last year.

The banks argue that things are more complicated than those numbers suggest. Only two-thirds of the banks raised compensation per person, and several said that was because of “redundancy issues” – people who were fired during the year being partially left in the calculations for various reasons.

But three banks raised compensation despite losing money. Among those that profited, eight raised pay packages at a faster rate than they grew.

They can’t really complain about Reuters not being able to give the full picture, either. Several banks refused to provide average headcount figures that would have made their workaround analysis unnecessary.

The report lists the three banks with the highest increases in per-person compensation as Danske Bank at 11 percent, Bank of Ireland at 9 percent, and Goldman Sachs at 8.8 percent.

Stacy Johnson

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