Banks Get Creative to Dodge Bonus Limits

Favorable loans, options aid bonus-bereft execs
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 29, 2010 5:07 AM CST
Banks Get Creative to Dodge Bonus Limits
Citigroup has capped most cash bonuses at $100,000 per employee but that doesn't count "deferred cash" awards.   (Shutter Stock)

Banks chafing under pay and bonus restrictions are helping execs make ends meet with low-interest loans, no-collateral loans, and even loans that don't need to be paid back unless the employee leaves the firm. Favorable and forgivable loans are nothing new in the industry, but experts say in-house loans have become a lot more common since banks pledged to cut pay and bonuses.

Banks are also easing restrictions on employee share sales to assist execs, many of whom are now struggling to meet private school fees and mortgage payments on multimillion-dollar homes. "I know it sounds ridiculous to Main Street, but it's a hardship," the head of a New York financial services job-search firm tells the Wall Street Journal. "So firms are trying to help out any way they can." (Read more perk stories.)

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