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Bonuses for bankers: business as usual

Wall Street banks in $70bn staff payout:

Financial workers at Wall Street’s top banks are to receive pay deals worth more than $70bn (£40bn) [equivalent to 10% of the US government bail-out package], a substantial proportion of which is expected to be paid in discretionary bonuses, for their work so far this year – despite plunging the global financial system into its worst crisis since the 1929 stock market crash, the Guardian has learned.

Lloyds chief tells staff: you’ll still get bonuses:

The chief executive of Lloyds TSB, one of the banks participating in the [UK] £37bn bank bail-out, has promised staff they will receive bonuses this year despite Gordon Brown’s promise of a crackdown on bankers’ pay following the investment by taxpayers.

In a recorded message to employees, Daniels stressed that the bank faced “very, very few restrictions” in its behaviour despite the injection of up to £5.5bn of taxpayers’ funds. “If you think about it, the first restriction was not to pay bonuses. Well Lloyds TSB is in fact going to pay bonuses. I think our staff have done a terrific job this year. There is no reason why we shouldn’t.”

Now that takes nerve.

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