Banker bonuses go up in smoke

burning money

The finance industry bonus pool has shrunk significantly this year, both in the UK and the US, which will leave many disappointed with their less-than-bumper bonus payouts.

Traders have had a particularly difficult 12 months, with instability in the markets, geopolitical tensions and other uncertainties impacting on performance. However, even stronger-performing areas such as mergers & acquisitions may see lower-than-average bonuses.

Public opinion on both sides of the pond is still heavily stacked against bankers’ bonuses, and the approaching general election in the UK is adding political pressure to keep rewards minimal. The introduction of a European cap, which limits bonuses to twice that of fixed an employee’s fixed salary, is also taking its toll on bonuses at Deutsche Bank and Barclays in London, according to the Financial Times.

Billions of fines by industry regulators have also helped to shrink the available bonus pool at banks including HSBC and Royal Bank of Scotland, making massive paycheques increasingly unlikely on Wall Street, or in the City.