C Suisse To Pay 2012 Cash Bonuses With Clawback, Firm Could Be Liable For $2bn Damages

Credit Suisse Canary Wharf

Credit Suisse plans to pay out part of its bonuses for top staff at the investment bank in cash that can be clawed back over the next three years.

Bloomberg reports that the compensation, called cash retention awards, will be given to directors and managing directors in the investment bank, the Zurich-based company informed employees in an internal memo this week. A Credit Suisse official confirmed details of the awards.

Credit Suisse used similar instruments to pay parts of bonuses of top investment bankers for 2008 and 2010, according to the company’s annual reports. Employees will also be eligible for deferred stock awards, some of which can be clawed back, and an asset-based instrument called Plus Bond as part of their 2012 variable compensation, according to the bank.

In the meantime, the news organisation reports that Credit Suisse was ruled by a judge to be liable for all damages that could be awarded to noteholders suing the bank over fraud at National Century Financial Enterprises Inc., a figure investors’ lawyers put at more than $2bn.

U.S. District Judge James Graham said yesterday that because New York law governs apportionment of fault in the case, Credit Suisse will be liable for 100% of former Chief Executive Officer Lance Poulsen’s share of damages.

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