Headhunter: bonuses on Wall Street could fall by 50 per cent

ONE of America’s top headhunters has warned Wall Street bonuses could fall by as much as 50 per cent.

Ilana Weinstein, founder and chief executive of executive search firm IDW, told Bloomberg TV: “This year it’s going to be a tough year. We’re hearing bonuses at the senior end are going to be down between 30 and 50 per cent this year.”

Weinstein, a former Goldman Sachs analyst, said between 50 and 80 per cent of bonus awards would be paid in shares that will vest in several years time rather than cash.

She added that Wall Street employees at the “more junior end” were expecting bonuses to be “between flat and 15 per cent” higher. “That’s the new up,” she said.

Wall Street staff on the sell side could jump ship to a hedge fund or other buy-side firm, said Weinstein.