AIG's 2008 Bonus Pool Rises to $454M

Company gives congressman the biggest figure yet
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted May 5, 2009 6:04 PM CDT
House Oversight Committee member Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Lawmakers and journalists keep pressing AIG about how much it paid out in bonuses in 2008, and the number keeps getting bigger, reports Politico. In response to a query from Rep. Elijah Cummings, the company now says it paid $454 million, about 4 times the figure it told Politico in March. The figure does not include $165 million in controversial retention payments to employees of a unit that caused AIG much of its financial grief.

“I simply cannot fathom why this company continues to erode the trust of the public and the US Congress, rather than being forthcoming about these issues from the start,” said Cummings. An AIG spokesman disagreed, citing the complexities of the bonus system and the semantics of the questions. “I think we’ve been pretty forthcoming," he said. "AIG is not a simple organization. We’re answering the question that we think we’re being asked.”