Fatcat bankers are set to rake in the biggest bonuses for a decade, experts say.
Firms, led by mega-wealthy investment banks, are expected to pay out more than £5billion to staff. Bankers closely linked to shamed tycoon Sir Philip Green are among those set to get bumper bonuses. Goldman Sachs veteran Michael Sherwood, who was quizzed by MPs over the bank’s advice to Green on the sale of BHS, could pocket more than the £17million he received last year.
His fellow Goldman kingpin Anthony Gutman, who also gave evidence to the BHS probe, could be in line for a multi-million payout for helping broker Japanese firm SoftBank’s £24billion takeover of British microchip giant ARM Holdings. Brian Caplen, editor of The Banker magazine, said: “It may be the biggest bonus round since 2006/07.” Banks slashed payouts after the credit crunch but they are creeping up again.
One investment banker said: “Things have picked up nicely.” But other experts said some European banks could cut bonuses. Last year 453 staff at HSBC each got at least €1million, then worth £780,000. Taxpayer-saved RBS handed out £373million for 2015, while Lloyds staff got £354million. David Hillman, of the Robin Hood Tax Campaign, said: “These levels of pay are unjustified. They are paying this because they’re not paying enough tax.”
On Wednesday, the Mirror reported how FTSE 100 bosses had, in the first days of the year, already each earned £28,000 – what the average worker makes in a year.