Wall Street Paid $26.7 Billion In Bonuses In 2013

Yet another sign that Wall Street is returning to the golden years before 2008, the New York financial sector paid out a tremendous amount of money in bonuses last year.

According to New York Daily News, the securities industry paid $26.7 billion in bonuses in 2013 — the most Wall Street has seen since 2008.

This averages out to roughly $165,000 per employee, which is 15 percent higher than the average bonus paid in 2012.

The news came from State Controller Thomas DiNapoli, who recently released a report about the financial sector and how it has impacted the state of New York.

Wall Street activity accounts for a whopping 16 percent of all state tax revenue, and accounts for roughly 8.5 percent of city tax revenue.

“Wall Street navigated through some rough patches last year and had a profitable year in 2013,” DiNapoli told NY Daily News. “Securities industry employees took home significantly higher bonuses on average.”

Wall Street still has some work to do if it wants to get back to pre-2008 levels. In 2007, the average bonus came to $177,830. But this is a step in the right direction.

DiNapoli did not yet provide total salary data for 2013, but he did reveal that financial industry employees have continued to earn more than workers in other industries.

Actually, that might be an understatement. In all other sectors, the average salary comes to $69,200. Those who work on Wall Street earn an average of $360,700 per year (including bonuses) — more than five times the amount of everyone else!

“Wall Street has certainly had a return to profitability,” DiNapoli added. “It’s well compensated, and remains an important part of the city and state economies.”

As impressive as these bonuses are, DiNapoli is not counting on them for additional tax revenue. He acknowledged that future bonuses could go up or down, so he is focused on the short-term impact of the current bonus increase.

Wall Street workers would be wise to do the same.

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