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Merrill CEO drops $10M bonus bid

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Amerigo Vespucci Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:40 PM
Original message
Merrill CEO drops $10M bonus bid
Source: CNN

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Merrill Lynch's chief executive John Thain has dropped his request for a $10 million annual bonus after being blasted by New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo.

Thain requested at a board meeting on Monday that Merrill's compensation committee not award him a bonus for 2008, and the board of directors accepted that request, Merrill Lynch said.

Thain had reportedly previously asked for a bonus of up to $10 million, which prompted Cuomo to send a strongly worded letter to Merrill's board of directors in which he called Thain's request for a bonus "nothing less than shocking."

Cuomo pointed out that the brokerage reported losses for every quarter this year, and has lost more than $11 billion in 2008. He added that Bank of America's (BAC, Fortune 500) takeover of Merrill, which was formally approved by shareholders Friday, "seems to have been the only thing that saved Merrill from collapse."

Read more: http://money.cnn.com/2008/12/08/news/economy/Cuomo_Thai...
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OhioChick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:43 PM
Response to Original message
1. He should never have requested it...greedy SOB. n/t
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BrklynLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:44 PM
Response to Original message
2. Maybe it was that gun that someone was holding to his head that convinced him.
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:45 PM
Response to Original message
3. You know, this is why corporate transparency is good, and secrecy is bad.
Let these weasels defend themselves in the light of day like everyone else.
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margotb822 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:50 PM
Response to Original message
4. These ultra wealthy are just completely dillusional
Why would he even ask for something like that?!
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Amerigo Vespucci Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:59 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Probably because in the past he and others of his ilk got away with it
I've got to believe the sound that IMMEDIATELY followed the news of the government bailouts was the sound of champagne corks popping.
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depakid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 07:58 PM
Response to Reply #4
8. How much scorn and ridicule would you go through for a shot at $10 million?
What he might want to be more concerned about is the upcoming scrutiny he'll be under when the new sherriff(s) comes to town....
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margotb822 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 12:28 AM
Response to Reply #8
12. Well, considering I have 0 million now,
I suppose I'd risk it. If I had an eight or nine digit bank account, I'd have to question my desire to add a measly ten million more.
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Robbien Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 07:14 PM
Response to Original message
6. The man probably thought no biggie I'll just ask for the bonus and get it
and no one will know or put up a stink until after the annual report is out and the bucks are safely in my pocket.

Imagine his surprise when the internets exploded with the story and Cuomo became aware of the ripoff.
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bulloney Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 07:43 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. People like Thain have grown accustomed to mega-bonuses they think its a birthright.
I always thought bonuses were what you get when your company performs well during the previous year and you were an integral part of that success.

Cripe, these a-holes can drive their companies off the cliff, throw hundreds, if not thousands of employees into the unemployment line, and they still think they're entitled to multi-million dollar bonuses on top of their obscene salaries.

This is the kind of stuff that triggers class warfare.
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yorkie Donating Member (65 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 08:15 PM
Response to Reply #7
9. bad CEOs and Corporate board responsibility
Hopefully the new administration will be able to address that. Good company performance should get a reward, bad should not and the CEO's job should be at risk. It is time for the Corporate boards to stand up and actually do something instead of just going to meetings and accepting money for their attendance.
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mascarax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 08:27 PM
Response to Original message
10. Oh, I'm sure he thinks he deserves it...
and that Merrill's problems are the result of others' ineptitude.

Honestly, when I hear shit like this, I wish there was a prison sentence for pure greed and assholeness.
But I know prisons are already crowded.
What a total ass.
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MasonJar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 08:49 PM
Response to Original message
11. It is actually unconscionable; I can personally not imagine being the
kind of white trash who would think such request plausible.
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Waiting For Everyman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 12:52 AM
Response to Original message
13. Overpaying the top needs to end everywhere. It's really graft.
If the small stockholders had more of a say, it probably wouldn't happen.

What I can't understand is, why don't people who have pensions in the big funds get organized and object to this kind of thing more? People should be directing what their money is invested in and how those companies are run, I think. For instance the big state employees' funds... those state employees should be a power that the corporations they're invested in should have to answer to.

I don't have a pension fund, but it just seems logical to me - that those savings should count for some clout to change things for the better.
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