Greedy Wall Street executive defends massive bonuses

Yeah, I know. Water is wet. Thain has to be one of the more repulsive slugs who slimed along on Wall Street. Even with the Merrill Lynch fiasco, he doesn’t appear to have learned anything or changed at all. The sane world all disagrees with him but he still has wads of cash in his pockets from the high times. Somehow none of our modern robber-barrons took much of a financial hit after being sent packing. That sure was a lot of pay for absolutely no risk on their part.

Former Merrill Lynch Chief Executive John Thain, who was fired after a scandal over the payment of billions of bonuses to Merrill traders, argued on Tuesday that big payouts played no role in triggering the financial crisis.

Congress and various federal regulators have accused Bank of America of failing to adequately disclose various details about the Merrill merger to investors, including the payment of $3.6 billion of bonuses to Merrill staff in the fall of 2008.

“The focus on bonuses as the cause of risk-taking is just wrong,” Thain told the Reuters Global Finance Summit in New York. “Bonuses did not cause excessive risk-taking and bonuses did not cause the financial crisis.”

I wonder how his new office renovation plan is going now that it’s on his dime.


An American in Paris, France. BA in History & Political Science from Ohio State. Provided consulting services to US software startups, launching new business overseas that have both IPO’d and sold to well-known global software companies. Currently launching a new cloud-based startup. Full bio here.

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