Hold on to your hats, ladies and gentlemen, Wall Street bonuses are headed for an epochal fall. According to estimates from the city Comptroller’s office provided to The Observer today, year-end bonuses will total $14.5 billion for 2008, an over 50 percent drop from 2007, when $28.9 billion was paid out to Wall Streeters.
Of course, the figures are merely an estimate for now, but the low projection jibes with the bleak year in finance, one that saw the collapse of the financial sector and the dissolution of two of the biggest investment houses: Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers.
The reduced bonuses will affect everything from luxury retail to top apartment trades. Expect a much quieter 2009.