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Obama Criticizes Wall Street Bonus Practice and Calls For More Reform

Julia Sun
7/03/14 1:22 PM EDT
President Obama criticized the bonus culture on Wall Street calling for additional reform to curb risky investing. In an interview with the American Public Media, the President said Wall Street's bonus structure still incentivizes some to take too much risk. The President said, "You can generate a huge amount of bonuses by making some big bets; you will be rewarded on the upside. [But] if you make a really bad bet, a lot of times you've already banked all your bonuses." According to New York State Comptroller's Office, Wall Street employees on average took home more than $164,000 in bonus last year. That's the highest post-recession average and the third highest on record. A number of institutions, however, are deferring part of the bonus for up to three years. By delaying compensation, employees have the partial incentive to not seek a quick payout and hurt others in the long run. Post crisis financial reform like Dodd-Frank in 2010 has limited firm-threatening speculative trades that pose risks to the financial system.

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