I see today that yet another “top” banker is about to resign or be pushed following record losses for the bank he runs. Citigroup chairman Chuck Prince has earned £27 million during his last four years at the bank, where he has presided over losses of £3.3 billion and a 57% slide in profits.
He joins former Merrill Lynch boss, Stan O’Neal, who last week was asked to leave but given a £181 million golden goodbye. In common with Prince, O’Neal was responsible for record losses at his bank. A staggering $2.3 billion during just one quarter, and a total of $8.4 billion. For working so hard, O’Neal earned $48 million in 2006. Yet when he announced he was leaving the bank’s share price actually went up.
So let’s imagine you’re working at a nursery and you lose 57% of the children in your care. Do you think you would be sent home, told you have been very silly and given some more children to take home with you? Or you sell cars for a living but decide to give away half the cars in your forecourt to random passers-by?
These men are over-paid failures who have lost millions for their banks. But no one blames them for it. Why is this?
Copyright: Helena Frith Powell 2007