That's the question I have to ask after reading this piece from Bloomberg about Credit Suisse's plan to get rid of some of their more toxic securities.
Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Credit Suisse Group AG’s investment bank has found a new way to reduce the risk of losses from about $5 billion of its most illiquid loans and bonds: using them to pay employees’ year-end bonuses.Why do I ask about the catch? Because I've never known a situation where the people at the top of a company--especially a financial services company--willingly take a kick to the head when it comes to their pay. We've seen it time and again during the bailout--companies get billions of dollars to loosen up the credit market and they use it on dividends and executive perks and to shore up their own liquidity, but not on lending. So while this looks good for the moment, I wonder what the catch is? I wonder how this company is going to swing it around so that their directors and managing directors make out like bandits once the dust has settled.
The bank will use leveraged loans and commercial mortgage- backed debt, some of the securities blamed for generating the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, to fund executive compensation packages, people familiar with the matter said. The new policy applies only to managing directors and directors, the two most senior ranks at the Zurich-based company, according to a memo sent to employees today.