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Goldman Hustles Investors on Soaring Bonuses

Bank privately meeting with large shareholders to shore up support
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 3, 2009 7:40 AM CST
Goldman Hustles Investors on Soaring Bonuses
Lloyd Blankfein, chairman and CEO of Goldman Sachs, leaves the financial company's headquarters, Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2009 in New York.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

(Newser) – Goldman Sachs has been holding private meetings with its top shareholders in an effort to stave off proposals that would reign in its ginormous bonuses. It’s a first for Goldman, which normally doesn’t feel compelled to justify its pay, no matter the public outcry. But shareholders have the power to curtail that compensation, and have already submitted five proposals to do so, the Wall Street Journal reports.

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Goldman’s pay pool is now at record highs, set to lavish an average $700,000 on each employee this year. In the meetings, high-ranking Goldman officials have tried to explain those figures in the context of the firm’s performance, and convince them not to vote for the proposals. A spokesman says the company is “puzzled” at the suggestion that shareholders want compensation reduced, maintaining that feedback has been positive. (Read more Goldman Sachs stories.)

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