U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge Mary Walrath may be a new folk hero. She’s the judge handling the Sports Authority case, and today she ruled that four Sports Authority executives will not receive a combined $2.85 million in bonuses that the company claims are incentives. Incentives for running the company into the ground? [More]
Taking out an expensive loan is often the only option when it comes to financing a new home. And while most prospective home buyers might expect their mortgage lender to find them the best deal, that isn’t always the case. Take for example a California-based mortgage lender being ordered to provide $730,000 in consumer redress for an illegal compensation system that offered bonuses to employees for steering borrowers into higher interest loans. [More]
Yes, both CEOs and Lenovo are frequent targets of our posts. We generally mock CEOs for lavish pay even with dubious accomplishments, and Lenovo for a general inability to sell and support products that consumers seem to really like. Despite our branding them an anti-capitalist prank, the China-based electronics company has had a record year, and CEO Yang Yuanqing received a pretty nice bonus of $5.2 million. So he did something crazy that most of his counterparts in the US would probably never consider: he divided $3 million of that bonus up among 10,000 employees.
Belt-tightening is happening everywhere, even on Wall Street, where excess has always seemed to have reigned supreme. A compensation survey says bonuses for financial workers in the district are expected to fall between 20 and 30 percent this year. While those who don’t receive any work bonuses won’t shed tears for Wall Street types, at least this is a sign that the financial world is connected to reality.
Whaaaaa? The Wall Street Journal says J.C. Penney and Home Depot have been investing in better customer service training, because apparently some egghead thinks it might increase sales. Penney started it back over the holiday shopping season, by giving cash bonuses to employees who improved their customer service scores. Home Depot should be rolling out some new improved customer interaction this month, where cashiers will ask if you found everything you needed and will call up the right department on your behalf if you didn’t.
Some execs are getting a “pity bonus” in their stockings this year. With the recession on, many execs are finding it hard to meet earnings targets or suffer from pummeled stock prices. So boards are having heart and changing the rules so the execs can still get a bonus.
David referred a friend to DirecTV. The satellite provider has a pretty neat referral program, promising a discount to both the new customer and the person who referred them to DirecTV. Well, theoretically. David writes that he and his friend learned that in order to get their referral discounts, the new customer has to either sign up on the Web or call a special number. He didn’t know this, and now neither he nor his friend will get their discounts.
It’s time for the annual round of outrage at the fact that the people who wrecked the economy are getting huge bonuses.
Did you leave your tin can filled with over $10,000 on the customer service counter of a Des Moines Kmart? Because if you did, call them, they found it.
Update: Several of our readers have pointed out that the owner has reclaimed the can and the money. She says her husband left it there by accident, possibly while having a reaction to some medication, and that she’s going to deposit the cash in a bank.
Not content with just one Worst Company in America victory, AIG is going for back-to-back titles by trying to give out $198 million in bonuses in March.
New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo’s office is gathering information in order to file fraud charges against some BoA executives over what they knew, and what they hid, when they acquired Merrill Lynch & Co. a year ago. Earlier this week, his office subpoenaed 5 board members to find out “what they knew regarding the mounting losses and bonus payments at Merrill before the deal closed on Jan. 1 and what role they played in deciding whether to disclose that information to shareholders,” according to the Associated Press.
Judge Jed Rakoff, our favorite crusading curmudgeon of the court, is at it again. And once again, he’s turned his ire to the backroom deal that Bank of America tried to cut with the Securities and Exchange Commission to settle a complaint about outsize bonuses paid at Merrill Lynch before BofA took it over last year. The $33 million settlement, Rakoff wrote in his decision, “does not comport with the most elementary notions of justice and morality.”
A hush fell over the AIG conference room on the day that their Worst Company in America 2009 trophy was unveiled. The eyes of every executive in the room sparkled with just a bit of pride. “Well done, everyone,” said the man at the head of the table. “But we mustn’t rest on our gilded-feces laurels. It’s time to begin our work for next year’s competition.”
Here’s a morbid bit of creative accounting, courtesy of the Wall Street Journal: if you work for Bank of America, J.P. Morgan Chase, or Wells Fargo, your employer may have taken out a life insurance policy on you.
So, remember those bonuses everyone was so mad about? Well, it turns out that they were bigger than originally disclosed. A lot bigger.