When it comes to outrageous bonuses in investment banks, it would be difficult to exceed the obscene bonuses paid at Lehman Brothers in 2007. Then, a bonus pool of $5.7bn was distributed among the bank’s staff with the top 50 people receiving over $8.2m each. That, however, was Lehman. What if there were a European investment bank which paid even higher bonuses, and did so right up until 2008-2009?
Meet Deutsche Bank, whose extremely well-remunerated former denizens are back in the news. Bloomberg reports that the case involving Yves Paturel, a trader who was fired after an internal LIBOR investigation, has come to court and that Deutsche has asked for it to be dismissed. As a reminder, Paturel is arguing that despite being paid £1.2m ($1.83m) in 2008 and £2.96m in 2009, he was insufficiently rewarded for his efforts. Paturel’s case rests on the fact that over the same period, Deutsche paid senior trader Christian Bittar bonuses ‘far in excess’ of his own. In 2008 alone, Bittar was owed £35m ($53m) – a sum that was withheld when he too was dismissed. Earlier reports suggested that Deutsche also paid Carl Maine, another trader, £27m for 2008-2009.
Needless to say, Deutsche is unlikely to pay as well for 2015. The EU bonus cap notwithstanding, there have been reports that new CEO John Cryan will be cutting many Deutsche bonuses to zero this year.
Separately, three weeks after Credit Suisse announced plans to get rid of 30% of its staff in London, The Times reports that the Swiss bank is about to get rid of some traders. 200 traders and salespeople in London are due to be informed that they’ve lost their jobs on Thursday, with gilt desks expected to bear the brunt of the hit as Credit Suisse pulls back from this area entirely.
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