The writing is on the wall for big bank bonuses

Some of Wall Street’s biggest banks have been cutting their compensation pools.

Morgan Stanley, which missed earnings on the top and bottom line on Monday morning, revealed it is setting aside $US1 billion less for compensation and benefits than it did a year ago.

“It look like no one is getting a bonus at Morgan Stanley,” said Kroll Bond Rating Agency senior ratings analyst Christopher Whalen.

The US bank has now put aside $US12.3 billion for compensation through the first nine months of the year. That compares to $US12.7 billion this time last year.

Goldman Sachs also put aside less money than last year for compensation. Goldman has socked away about $US2.3 billion for compensation, compared to $US2.8 billion a year ago — a 16% decline.

It has put $US10.6 billion aside through the first nine months, down around 1%. Third quarter earnings at the bank missed analyst expectations by some margin.

JPMorgan too put aside less money for pay in the third quarter, with expenses falling 7% from last year, according to its third quarter report.

The compensation bill for the first nine months stands at $US23 billion, down from $US23.3 billion this time a year ago. It took missed analyst expectations for third quarter earnings.

The weak third quarter results also increase the likelihood of there being job cuts, according to Whalen.

“You’re going to see layoffs from all of the big banks.”

Business Insider reported last week that banks had been shutting down branches. Bank of America’s chief Brian Moynihan said last week that headcount would continue to come down at the bank.

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