Wall Street pay is highest since financial crisis
Wall Street pay keeps rising.
Including bonuses, the average salary in New York City’s securities industry jumped by 13 percent to $422,500 in 2017, according to a report from New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli.
That’s the highest figure since 2008 and the third-highest on record, once adjusted for inflation.
“Ten years after Lehman Brothers’ collapse it is clear that Wall St. does not need to return to the days of excessive risk-taking to enjoy rising profits,” DiNapoli said in a statement.
Bank profits reached a record $60.2 billion last quarter, driven in part by corporate tax cuts, according to FDIC numbers.
Despite healthy profits, DiNapoli’s office found that the number of Wall Street jobs dipped slightly in 2017 to 176,900 from 177,000 a year before. That’s 6 percent below the pre-crisis high in 2007.
Wall Street drives a large chunk of the economy in both New York state and New York City.
The industry accounted for a fifth of all private sector wages in the city last year, though it made up less than 5% of overall employment, according to DiNapoli’s report.
However, compensation at banks remains a touchy subject.
Bad incentives have been blamed for the flimsy mortgage underwriting standards and risky bets by Wall Street that led to the 2008 crisis. More recently, overly aggressive sales goals were at the heart of the Wells Fargo fake-accounts scandal.
— CNNMoney’s Matt Egan contributed to this report.