The year 2023 was marked by industry-wide layoffs, bank failings, and slow but unsure disinflation that left Wall Street wary. So this year, many bank and hedge fund professionals can expect lackluster bonus checks for a second year in a row, according to Wall Street compensation expert Alan Johnson, with most remaining flat or slumping even further from 2022. There will be some exceptions, he said, including for equity underwriting, retail and commercial bankers at large institutions, and wealth management. His firm, Johnson & Associates, laid out these bonus predictions in November, as previously reported by Business Insider.

Bonus pools for traders are expected to be largely flat with some small bumps at Goldman and BofA, Bloomberg reported in late December.

People looking to leave a firm usually wait until their bonus checks clear, Johnson explained, and sometimes a disappointing bonus pushes someone to go. But there may be less of that this year, he said.

“There are many fewer job openings, and people are risk averse,” he said.

Business Insider / January 9, 2024