“An old fashioned run on the Bank”
Washington Mutual Bank was seized by government regulators and it’s branches sold to J.P. Morgan Chase & Co in the biggest bank failure in U.S. history. According to the Office of Thrift Supervision, bank customers withdrew $16.7 billion dollars causing it to become “unsound”.
Calls for Excessive CEO Compensation for Failed Companies are falling on deaf ears.
As shocking as it is to see the largest bank failure in American history, is even worse to hear about the compensation going to the CEO that has been in charge for only three weeks. It is being reported that Washington Mutual CEO, Alan Fishman, who took over as CEO on September 8th, 2008, will receive a total of 20 million in compensation. This is truly outrageous that the Board of Directors would award this package; and also that Fishman would actually accept it. With Congress still deadlocked on the 700 billion dollar bailout package, one of the main talking points of the proposal has been not to reward CEOs that presided over the bank failures and the companies that need to be bailed out. This truly shows how out of touch some of corporate America really is. No wonder Main Street does not want to bail out Wall Street. This is a prime example why there is so much outrage by American Taxpayers. With all due respect to Mr. Fishman, what did he possibly accomplish to earn even a fraction of this windfall in three weeks time ?
What should be done?
Hopefully, clearer heads will prevail with the Board of Directors and Mr. Fishman with regard to his compensation. Mr. Fishman should do the right thing as a sign of good faith for the betterment of the shareholders and employees of Washington Mutual and either refuse to receive, or return the majority of the outlandish compensation . CEOs deserve to be paid handsomely when they perform and create shareholder value; however, they should NOT be paid 20 million dollars for becoming the captain of a ship whose mast was already in the water and then, watch it sink to the bottom in less than three weeks.