2010 Bonuses Thought Likely To Be Up 15%

Yep, you read it right. There's already specualtion about 2010 banker bonuses, and the smart money says that the prospects look rather good.

Hot on the heels on JPMorgan Chase's blow-out first-quarter earnings - where $2.91bn was allocated for compensation and benefits over at the investment bank in the period (an average of $164,000 per employee), Wall Street pay consultant Alan Johnson says that bonuses could be up, on average, as much as 15% this year.

In the meantime, Bloomberg reports that Bank of America, which reports Friday, could post earnings of around $1.2bn, thanks mainly to the performance over at Merrill Lynch. The news agency quotes Charles Peabody, from Portales Partners, who points to Merrill's 'commodities and international capability', and who thinks that 'March was a fabulous month' for the firm's capital markets businesses.

And The Wall Street Journal reports that Bank of America has finally appointed a new CFO. 57-year-old Charles Noski, previously CFO over at both AT&T and Northrop Grumman will come aboard May 11th.

Reuters reports that Citi is to sell its hedge fund business to SkyBridge Capital, which is acquiring three Citi Alternatives Investments units with around $4.2bn in assets. Financial terms have not been disclosed.

Finally, The Times reports that Terry Smith, the CEO of Tullett Prebon, was awarded a $6.17m bonus for his work last year, half of which was in cash. He also received a base salary of just over $1m.

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