President Barack Obama's pay czar on Tuesday ordered executive compensation at prominent bailed-out firms to be cut by 15 percent, amid voter anger over Wall Street pay.While I don't see this as anything more than symbolic, sometimes symbols can be powerful. Having said that, there's stronger stuff coming.
Kenneth Feinberg said 119 executives at AIG, Chrysler, Chrysler Financial, General Motors and its troubled former finance arm GMAC would see their cash rewards slashed by a third and their total pay cut by 15 percent versus last year.
All five firms received taxpayer money to stay afloat during the financial crisis, which continues to weigh on US economic recovery.
Feinberg also sent a letter to more than 400 firms who got government bailouts before February 2009, asking them to disclose details of the top 25 executives receiving annual pay of more than 500,000 dollars.
It marks the first time the government will look into pay at a broad swath of firms that took government bailout funds.
The Senate Banking Committee cleared a financial system overhaul bill to head to a Senate vote late yesterday. Connecticut Democrat Chris Dodd, chairman of the committee, pushed the bill through with a 13-10 vote that went straight down party linesnone of the committees Republicans approved the bill.FINALLY, the Dodd bill moves forward. I fully expect all 41 Republicans to filibuster it. But if the GOP wants to run on saving the bankers, let them. I'm betting in an election year, at least one GOP Senator will be looking to make a deal on passing financial reform.
The bill would give the Federal Reserve more oversight over the largest financial institutions and allows shareholders more of a voice in executive compensation, among other provisions.
Then again, the GOP clearly isn't that bright.