Finally. Since the rumor that top Citi executives wouldn’t take bonuses in light of their multi-billion-dollar government bailout was floated a full month ago, with no official word on the subject since, we assumed Andrew Cuomo was going to have to apply the electricity before Vikram Pandit et al gave up their right to siphon cash from a stone. But Wednesday evening, Pandit finally broke the news in a staffwide memo that he, chairman Win Bischoff, and Robert Rubin would forego annual bonuses, and that bonuses for other top executives would be “reduced substantially.”
Unfortunately, the harsh realities of 2008, primarily our earnings results, mean that our bonus pool is dramatically lower than last year,” Mr. Pandit wrote. “Our focus, however, is on the future, and I believe we will continue to make progress in 2009 — much more of it and much faster than we did in 2008.”
He then blasted R. Kelly’s “I Believe I Can Fly” over the interoffice sound system and declared it “Citi’s Number One Theme Song of 2008.” No, just kidding, he didn’t, but it would have been really great if he had.