Deutsche Bank is considering witholding bonuses to former executives, including ex-Chief Executives Anshu Jain and Josef Ackermann, to compensate for the lender’s poor financial performance.
Reuters reported that the bank had engaged a law firm to look through the employment contracts of former managers to find out whether the bank can force them to forfeit bonus payments and share sales.
Meanwhile, German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported on Thursday that six former executives could be forced to repay bonuses to the bank, including ex-Chief Executives Anshu Jain and Josef Ackermann.
The report said that Anshu Jain, who was co-CEO of Deutsche Bank from 2012 to 2015, would have to pay the bank more than €10 million (£9 million).
Responding to the claims, former CEO Josef Ackermann said the discussion focused on whether the outstanding bonuses would “voluntarily be left with the bank” rather than the repaying of bonuses from past years.
Deutsche Bank has had a volatile year.
Shares plummeted close to 30-year lows last month after reports surfaced that the US Department of Justice was looking to impose a $14 billion fine for mortgage-backed security misselling in the run-up to the financial crisis. The fine is bigger than the bank’s market value, leading to fears the bank would be sunk.
The German lender slashed its bonus pool after reporting a $7.4 billion loss for 2015.. The firm announced in its 2015 annual report that the overall bonus pool was cut by 17%, totaling €2.4 billion ($2.7 billion) for 2015.
Current CEO John Cryan has spoken out before about the compensation culture at investment banks. In an October presentation, he outlined what he called “significant challenges” posed by an “inflexible compensation culture.”
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