Goldmanites to double their pay

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Following a bumper year in 2005, staff at Goldman Sachs could be on track for even more pay in 2006.

Yesterday the firm reported record first quarter net profits of $2.48bn (1.43bn), up 64% on the first quarter of 2005. Compensation and benefit expenses soared nearly 30% over the same period. Staff numbers rose only 9%.

If the rest of the year continues in the same fortuitous vein, Goldman's 23,600 employees can bank on average pay of $900,000 per head. This should be reason for celebration: last year they earned a meagre $521,000.