Lunchtime Links: Ominous moves to clawback bonuses through higher taxes

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It's not a certainty, but the fact that it's being discussed at all suggests a new approach to retrieving bonuses that are deemed unfair. The top Democrat and Republican on the US Senate Finance Committee are both calling for higher taxes on bonuses at institutions receiving government money. Specifically, they want a 35% tax on individuals receiving performance related bonuses above $50k, and a 35% tax on organizations paying such bonuses. Merrill Lynch bankers in the US may have reason to be scared, although current proposals only relate to bonuses earned or paid after January 1, 2009.

The good news in the UK is that Lord Turner's tome contains no new developments on remuneration, but reiterates what went before and adds that proposed new capital requirements will probably have a more stabilizing impact than reform of the compensation system.

Pesto's digested version of Turner's main points. (BBC)

Spitzer: bonuses aren't the real scandal at AIG. (Slate)

Eleven of the individuals who received "retention" bonuses of $1 million or more are no longer working at AIG, including one who received $4.6 million. (Infectious Greed)

House panel wants Merrill bonus records. (Wall Street Journal)

Who's doing what at Merrill BofA. (Reuters)

Unemployment is not rising fastest in the City; it is rising fastest in Wales. (Financial Times)

Corporate banking buoys RBS. (Financial Times)

Everyone wants to work for a hedge fund or a boutique. (Reuters)

New debt advisory house, Versatus, is born. (Financial News)

Meredith Whitney says it will get WORSE. (CNBC)

Layoff, the game. (Tiltfactor)

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