Wall Street Bonuses Fall 44%

State may lose $1B in tax revenue
By Ambreen Ali,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 28, 2009 4:58 PM CST
Wall Street Bonuses Fall 44%
Traders and investment bankers faced a 44% dip in the overall bonus pool last year. A bond trader waits to board a commuter ferry to Manhattan.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

(Newser) – Wall Street firms still dished out end-of-year bonuses in 2008, but they were a lot smaller. Cash bonuses fell 44% from the year prior, from a total of $33 billion to $18 billion, Reuters reports. That drop may take $1 billion in tax revenue from New York state, which is already anticipating a potential $15.4 billion deficit. Ailing financial firms also shed 19,000 jobs, 10% of New York City's financial workforce.

A salary of $100,000 to $150,000 is typical for a wide range of Wall Street jobs, Bloomberg notes. Bonuses, sometimes $1 million or more, usually make up the bulk of employees' compensation. Despite hundreds of billions in taxpayer aid to be injected in the industry, the government and firms are bracing for a rough 2009. "The industry is still continuing to write off toxic assets," the state's comptroller says. (Read more unemployment stories.)

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