The Huffington Post has a story on the thirteen biggest paychecks in finance. This is certainly not the actual thirteen biggest in finance, because those would all be hedge fund managers. And it probably isn’t the thirteen biggest in the banking sector, since I don’t think banks have to disclose that (they do have to disclose top executives’ pay; I’m not sure if any recent changes in the law demand disclosure of the top earners’ pay). But it’s still thirteen big paychecks.
If there’s one name shareholders should be mad about, it’s probably Gregory Curl at Bank of America, who comes in at #12 — despite getting completely rolled by Greg Fleming in the negotiations to buy Merrill Lynch, at least according to Andrew Ross Sorkin in Too Big to Fail. On Sunday, September 14, 2008 — the day before Lehman declared bankruptcy and the real panic began — B of A agreed to pay not just a premium for Merrill Lynch, but, according to Sorkin, “the biggest premium in the history of bank mergers” (p. 358). (Most likely, Bank of America could have bought Merrill for a small fraction of the purchase price only a week later.) Not only that, but Bank of America agreed to fund Merrill’s bonus pool up to 2007 levels, which would contribute (via the scandal over the Merrill bonuses) to Ken Lewis losing his job as B of A’s CEO.