Goldman Sachs insists that it hasn’t decided how much to pay CEO Lloyd Blankfein for last year’s extraordinary year.
That seems inconceivable (it’s February), but perhaps Goldman is referring to the “final, final, final decision that can’t be changed.”
In any event, it’s not hard to understand why Goldman is dragging its feet on this one: Because unless the bonus is zero, Goldman will get flamed.
But is that really fair? Goldman did have an extraordinary year. And Blankfein hasn’t taken a bonus for two years (if memory serves). Yes, Goldman would have gone bust along with the rest of the financial system if the US taxpayer hadn’t bailed it out in the fall of 2008, but lots of other firms would have gone bust, too, and their CEOs and executives are getting nice bonuses. And plenty of other executives at Goldman are getting huge bonuses, so it hardly seems fair to exclude the man in charge just for appearance’s sake.
So pretend you’re on the Goldman comp committee (which in this case is composed of outsiders like the ex head of Fannie Mae), and answer this most pressing of questions:
How much should Lloyd Blankfein get paid?
$0? $10 million? $30 million? $100 million? Put your answer in the comments below, along with your logic. We’ll ship the consensus and worthy explanations off to Goldman communications boss Lucas Van Praag.
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