SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) — Top Wall Street executives reacted harshly on Friday to proposed legislation that would punitively tax bonuses awarded to employees at firms receiving federal assistance.
Citigroup Inc. Chief Executive Vikram Pandit and Bank of America Corp. Chief Executive Ken Lewis issued strongly worded internal memos about the proposed tax legislation, according to the online edition of The Wall Street Journal, while J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. Chief Executive Jamie Dimon sought to reassure his top executives that the firm is engaging with lawmakers on the matter.
The legislation, passed by the House on Thursday, would impose a 90% tax on bonuses for employees making over $250,000 a year at companies receiving at least $5 billion in federal aid under the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP.
Citi’s Pandit criticized the proposed legislation in a memo to employees on Friday, arguing that it could result in the firm losing top talent.
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From the New York Post:
Just weeks after Citigroup averted total collapse with a $45 billion shot in the arm of taxpayer cash, the bank jetted its former CEO and his family on one of its corporate jets to a posh Mexican resort for New Year’s, The Post has learned.
Sandy Weill, 75, hopped aboard the tanking bank’s Bombardier BD 700 Global Express on Dec. 26 with his wife, Joan, daughter Jessica, her husband and their children.
The holiday jaunt came the same week that Citigroup – which lost $28.2 billion over the last five quarters and cut 75,000 jobs globally in 2008 – agreed to curtail runaway corporate expenses as part of a deal to get the massive influx of federal money.