Blog post from IIRON:
1,500 people turned out IIRON’s Occupy the Dream public meeting, celebrating the legacy the Martin Luther King, Jr. by holding elected officials at the state and national level accountable to move to a progressive agenda protecting the interest of the 99%. Leaders also announced an week of action targeting banks that accepted tax payer financed bail-out funds, yet refuse to provide relief to homeowners in foreclosure.
Regular exercise. Read more. Eat healthier. All great plans for 2012.
But when it comes to the New Year, there's one resolution that everyone in the 99% should commit to: Moving Our Money off of Wall Street and into our communities.
Friend --Regular exercise. Read more. Eat healthier. All great plans for 2012.Ian, Tracy, Ilana, and The New Bottom Line coalition
But when it comes to the New Year, there's one resolution that everyone in the 99% should commit to: Moving Our Money off of Wall Street and into our communities in 2012.
Make your New Year's Resolution and plug into the action with thousands of other people in 2012 to Move Our Money.
Moving our money out of mega-banks like Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, and Wells Fargo is not only a good thing for our economy - it's a good thing for your wallet and your community.
Instead of paying ridiculous fees or supporting the big banks that crashed our economy, your money will be doing good closer to where you live - through credit unions that serve non-corporate workers, or community banks committed to investing in your hometown.
Let the world know: in 2012, you're resolved to leaving your megabank once and for all.
Once you’ve made your resolution, take an extra minute to spread the word on Facebook and on Twitter.
Thanks so much for your action,
P.S. Like our work? Make a tax-deductible donation to the The New Bottom Line, "Most Valuable National Coalition of 2011" according to The Nation Magazine.1
Your support will help us keep families in their homes and make sure we hold big banks and elected officials accountable to the 99% in 2012.
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Prepared by the Public Accountability Initiative.
Big Bank Bonus Facts: 2011
Seven big banks – Bank of America, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, US Bank, and Wells Fargo – are set to dole out year-end bonuses in the coming weeks. The banks do not release data on compensation until early next year, but it is possible to estimate the size of this year’s compensation pool based on data from the first three quarters of 2011(note that compensation pools include salaries, benefits, and bonuses).
Press reports have suggested that Wall Street bankers will face a pay cut this year, but based on figures from the third quarter, compensation pools at the big banks are on track to be slightly larger than last year’s record breaking number: a combined $156 billion in total compensation.[i]
- $156 billion. The seven banks are projected to pay $156 billion in compensation in 2011, a 3.7% increase from last year’s combined compensation pool ($151 billion).
- A Good Year. Six of the seven banks set aside more money for compensation through the first three quarters of 2011 than they did in the first three quarters of 2010.
- Goldman Sachs. Goldman Sachs’s compensation pool has decreased by 13% in 2011, but the bank’s 38,900 employees are still projected to receive an average of $362,862 in compensation.
- Bank of America. Despite a dismal year, Bank of America set aside 7% more compensation through the first three quarters of 2011 than it did during the first three quarters of 2010.
- JPMorgan Chase. Investment bankers at JPMorgan Chase are projected to make $386,148 in 2011, in contrast to employees in the bank’s retail financial services division, many of them tellers, who are projected to make an average of $61,130.
Projected Compensation Pools
The banks release information on the size of their compensation pools at the end of each quarter (note that compensation pools include salaries, benefits, and bonuses).
Table 1: Projected Compensation Pools
Compensation as of 2011 Q3
2011 Projected Compensation
Bank of America
Source: SEC 10-Q (quarterly report) filings for each bank. Projected 2011 compensation pool is calculated assuming the Q4 compensation allocation is equal to the average compensation allocation of the previous three quarters.
- The New Bottom Line coalition has estimated that the big banks could write down the principal of underwater mortgages at a one-year cost of $71 billion saving underwater families an average of $543 per month, pumping billions into the economy and creating one million jobs.[ii] The banks have the money – this year’s compensation pool is projected to be more than double that.
- The big banks could spend the $71 billion on principal reduction and still have enough money to pay their employees an average salary of $68,553.[iii]
Investment Banker Compensation
Compensation at the big banks varies significantly from division to division. At JPMorgan Chase, for example, employees in the investment banking division are projected to make an average salary of $386,148 in 2011, as opposed to employees in the retail financial services division, who are projected to make an average $61,130.[iv]
Neither Goldman Sachs or Morgan Stanley have retail banking arms, so the average compensation for employees at those banks is significantly higher than it is at banks that employ thousands of tellers. Goldman Sachs’s 36,800 employees are projected to make an average of $362,862.
Table 2: Average Compensation at Selected Investment Banks
2011 Projected Compensation (millions)
2011 Projected Average Compensation
Source: SEC 10-Q (quarterly report) filings for each bank.
* JPMorgan Chase’s figures are for its investment banking division (as opposed to its entire compensation pool). Other big banks do not break out headcounts and compensation by division, so this figure is impossible to determine.
- The income threshold for the top 1% of income earners in the US starts at $386,000.[v] The average employee in the JPMorgan Chase investment services division will make the cut this year at $386,148. The average Goldman Sachs employee just misses, with average compensation of $362,862. If the data were available to exclude the lower paid clerical and support staff at these companies, there is little doubt that investment bankers at all of the big banks would be firmly ensconced in the 1%.
CEO Compensation (2010)
CEO compensation figures will not be available for several months. Below are figures for each big bank CEO for last year, as well as a breakdown of each CEO’s hourly wage, based on a 2,000 hour work year.
Table 3: CEO Compensation at Big Banks in 2010
Bank of America
$38.4 million[xii] *
* This figure is for Pandit’s 2008-2010 compensation package.
- JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon made enough last year to restore after-school programming for 20,000 children (employing 2,000 people) in his native New York State.[xiv]
- Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf makes enough in one hour to pay the average tuition of a public four-year university (average tuition: $8,244).[xv]
- It takes the average Bank of America teller 441 hours, or 11 weeks of work, to make what Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan made in one hour last year ($5,000).[xvi]
- Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman made as much in 9 minutes last year as the average Social Security recipient receives in a month ($1,082).[xvii]
- Contract drivers at American ports make $28,783 a year – what Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein made in just over three hours last year. Goldman Sachs has been targeted by the Occupy movement for its ownership of port terminal operator SSA Marine and its sweatshop-like conditions.[xviii]
[i] For recent news of looming Wall Street pay cuts, see the Options Group study discussed in “Wall Street Pay Hits a Wall,” Wall Street Journal, November 28, 2011. Available here: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203764804577060652927268624.html
[ii] New Bottom Line report: http://www.newbottomline.com/fixing_the_housing_crisis_would_create_one_million_jobs_annually_new_report_finds
[iii] The seven big banks have 1.24 million employees; reducing compensation pools by $71 billion would leave $85 billion, which works out to $68,553 per employee.
[iv] This is based on a headcount in retail financial services of 128,992 and a compensation expenses of $5.914 billion through three quarters in 2011, as reported in JPMorgan Chase’s 2011 third quarter 10-Q: http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/19617/000001961711000264/corpq32011.htm report:
[vi] Assuming a 2,000 hour work year for the sake of simplicity.
[xiv] See “After-School, Youth Programs See Cuts Ahead,” Education Week, March 30, 2011. http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/beyond_schools/2011/03/new_york_established_youth_programs_see_cuts_ahead.html
[xv] CollegeBoard: http://www.collegeboard.com/student/pay/add-it-up/4494.html
[xvi] Average bank teller wage is $11.42 per hour at Bank of America, according to PayScale: http://www.payscale.com/research/US/Employer=Bank_of_America_Corp._(BOFA)/Hourly_Rate
Every year we hear about big bank executives being awarded multi-million dollar bonuses, even as these same big banks crashed the economy. This year, we won't let big banks use our money for these huge bonuses when they could be helping homeowners stay in their homes. That's why it's time to break up with the big banks.
After a lot of advocacy work by Washington CAN!, Working Washington, and inspired by the ongoing #Occupy movement, the Seattle City Council on Monday unanimously adopted a resolution that calls on the city to examine its banking and investment practices, home-foreclosure patterns, and the financing of local elections.
- Plan a series of events and activities that escalate the public attention and pressure on your local leaders to adopt your resolution. Start simple and build up over the course of the next month. Just a few ideas for ramping up your campaign:
- Organize groups of friends, family, community organizations, unions, and congregations to publicly take their money out of the big banks. You can find resources for personal divestment here: moveourmoneyusa.org
- Write letters to the editor or op-ed articles in your local newspaper.
- Start conversations with how you can partner with local credit unions and community banks to build support for your campaign.
Report releases (Here are two examples that ACCE in CA and NY Communities Change used for their campaign launches.
Additional Note: Consider ways that this divestment resolution can have the most positive impact in terms of community INVESTMENT.
Ideally, we want to not just move money or sever a relationship with the banks, but identify a pro-active, community benefit as the alternative.
You can look to create specific programs where money is moved from a big bank into a local fund that is specifically slated for some type of community benefit. For example, in Massachusetts, State Treasurer Steve Grossman started the Small Business Banking Partnership.
- Bank fact sheet flyers:
- Letter to Bank CEO to deliver to branch manager
- Pledge to divest to hand out to crowd and collect new names
- Press release
- Agenda for event - Sample Agendas
Once you’re done, make sure you report your action at moveourmoneyusa.org
Also write a up a report on your action and send that and any photos or videos to email@example.com
- Meet with a City Council member, Mayor or other leader that you think might introduce or support a divestment resolution or proposal and talk to them about why you think moving your city’s money our of the big banks is a good idea. Bring stories about how the big banks have hurt your community and any facts and data about the local impact in your key issues. Ask them to get behind your campaign.
- Continue to meet more with supportive members of the city government or sympathetic leaders in your institution on an ongoing basis.
- Find out where and when a divestment resolution could be introduced-- like a City Council meeting, University Board meeting, or other venues.
Once you understand the specifics of your city’s or intuition’s financial situation, put together the resolution or proposal you’d like to see adopted.
Consider ways that this divestment resolution can have the most positive impact in terms of community INVESTMENT. Ideally, want to not just move money or sever a relationship with the banks, but identify a pro-active, community benefit as the alternative. In some instances, you can identify local banks/credit unions as a replacement for the big Wall Street banks. You can use the following links to find local banks and investigate, because local banks generally have a much better record on community investment.
You can also look to include specific programs in your resolution where money is moved from a big bank into a local fund that is specifically slated for some type of community benefit.