(Reuters) – It is raining money again on many top U.S. and EU bank executives, less than three years after taxpayers worldwide rescued the banking industry from the worst financial crisis in decades.
Government responses to this vary from country to country. Britain and to a lesser extent the rest of the EU are embracing pay curbs, while the United States is doing little.
These divergent approaches undermine pledges of global cooperation on reforming bank oversight, but the likelihood of changing national traditions on the issue seems slim.
While Europeans are more willing to impose limits on pay, Americans appear to be inured to sky-high banker compensation in a period of widening U.S. income disparity. The issue is hardly registering on Capitol Hill or in opinion polls.
“I think that will continue” to be the case, said Simon Johnson, a business professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and author of “13 Bankers,” a book on the crisis.
For years now, bankers have made fortunes dwarfing other industries, especially in the United States, and nothing seems to interrupt that pattern for very long.
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