Financial Regulatory Forum

US’ Geithner says bank fee can recoup AIG bonuses

By David Lawder

WASHINGTON, Feb 3 (Reuters) – U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Wednesday said insurer AIG’s contracts to pay hundreds of millions of dollars in bonuses were “outrageous” and appealed to Congress to help recoup the payments.

Geithner said Congress could help recover the “deeply irresponsible” bonuses by passing an Obama administration proposal to levy fees on large financial firms.

“Those contracts were outrageous. They should never have been permitted,” Geithner said in testimony to the U.S. House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee.

Obama has proposed a fee on the largest financial companies to collect around $90 billion over 10 years to recoup taxpayer losses resulting from financial bailouts.

The White House has shifted to a more aggressive stance on Wall Street since the Democrats lost a Senate seat in a special election in Massachusetts in January. The election highlighted voter resentment against big banks and big bonuses in the wake of massive bailouts during the financial crisis.

US pay czar: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac unique when it comes to pay

WASHINGTON, Dec 30 (Reuters) – Mortgage finance firms Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac face a unique set of problems that distinguish them from other companies receiving government aid when it comes to setting executive pay, the Obama administration’s pay czar said on Wednesday.

The two government-controlled companies, which have tapped Treasury credit lines to the tune of a combined $111 billion, said last week they would pay their CEOs up to $6 million in cash for this year.

Kenneth Feinberg, the Treasury Department official charged with overseeing executive pay at firms receiving aid from the government’s $700 billion bailout fund, told CNBC the uncertainty over the future of the mortgage finance companies was one factor that made their situation unique.

US pay czar caps more salaries at bailed out firms

By Karey Wutkowski and Steve Eder

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK, Dec 11 (Reuters) – The U.S. pay czar on Friday expanded a crackdown on pay packages at four companies rescued with taxpayer money, limiting most cash salaries at $500,000 for a second tier of top earners.

The Treasury Department’s Kenneth Feinberg issued the new limits amid outcries from some companies on a government lifeline that they cannot retain or attract key employees, sending the firms racing for a bailout exit.

He set the compensation structures for the 26th through 100th highest-paid employees at four firms: Citigroup Inc, American International Group, General Motors Co, and GMAC.

U.S. pay czar: Will soon decide how to use clawback

Kenneth Feinberg, Special Master for TARP Executive Compensation, speaks to Reuters during an interview at his Washington law office, October 26, 2009.  REUTERS/Jason Reed   (UNITED STATES)   By Karey Wutkowski
WASHINGTON, Nov 2 (Reuters) – The U.S. pay czar said on Monday that he will determine “in the near future” how he will use his power to claw back pay at companies that have taken bailout money but is not currently in negotiations to do so.

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U.S. pay czar vows to rework 2010 AIG bonuses

Kenneth Feinberg, special master for executive compensation under the Troubled Asset Relief Program at the Treasury Department, testifies  before the House Oversight and Government Reform committee during a hearing on ?Executive Compensation: How Much is Too Much?? on Capitol Hill in Washington October 28, 2009. The Obama administration's pay czar said on Wednesday that renegotiating guaranteed bonus contracts at American International Group's AIG Financial Products unit was a top priority for him in 2010.   REUTERS/Yuri Gripas (UNITED STATES POLITICS BUSINESS)   By David Lawder
WASHINGTON, Oct 28 (Reuters) – Renegotiating bonuses to American International Group employees is a “top priority,” the Obama administration’s pay czar said on Wednesday, adding he believes he can do so without losing key employees.

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Pay czar Feinberg increased base pay at rescued U.S. firms – WSJ

Oct 28 (Reuters) – Kenneth Feinberg, the U.S. Treasury bailout program’s special master for compensation, who cut total compensation for top earners at seven bailed-out firms last week, increased base salaries at the companies, the Wall Street Journal said, citing its own analysis of U.S. Treasury data.

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INTERVIEW – Obama’s pay czar looking ahead to 2010 with deeper, not broader bite

Kenneth Feinberg, Special Master for TARP Executive Compensation, speaks to Reuters during an interview at his Washington law office, October 26, 2009.  REUTERS/Jason Reed   (UNITED STATES)   By Steve Eder
WASHINGTON, Oct 27 (Reuters) – The Obama administration’s pay czar, who sent shock waves through Wall Street by slashing compensation at seven bailed-out companies, says those moves were just the beginning.

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US bank regulator sees risk in pay czar rulings

   By Karey Wutkowski
CHICAGO, Oct 26 (Reuters) – A top U.S. bank regulator said on Monday that there is “very real concern” that some large financial firms that have received massive taxpayer bailouts could be harmed by the rulings of the Obama administration’s pay czar.Comptroller of the Currency John Dugan said pay czar Kenneth Feinberg has a difficult challenge to both rein in outsized paychecks at the seven firms he has jurisdiction over, while not being so harsh that top performers leave the companies.

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U.S. pay czar emphasizes wide “clawback” power

By Karey Wutkowski
WASHINGTON, Oct 23 (Reuters) – U.S. pay czar Kenneth Feinberg emphasized on Friday his ability to claw back pay at any company receiving a taxpayer bailout, but said such an extreme action “will be rare and far between.”

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Fed issues U.S. bank pay guidelines to combat risk

WASHINGTON, Oct 22 (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve issued bank pay guidelines on Thursday to curb the type of excessive risk-taking it said contributed to the crisis that nearly collapsed the financial system last year.

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