Wall Street: Taking Bailouts, Giving Bonuses?

One additional guideline calls for the "required recovery of any bonus or incentive compensation" paid to a senior executive officer based on information that is proved to be "materially false." There is also a restriction on compensation that excludes incentives for senior executive officers "to take unnecessary and excessive risks that threaten the value of the financial institution."

Wall Street bonus decisions are typically made at the end of the year. Mark Borges, a principal with Compensia, Inc., a Northern California compensation consulting firm, says he expects that, due to the unprecedented circumstances this year, companies will disclose bonus amounts "sooner, rather than later."

The clearest information about bonuses comes in a "proxy statement" filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, usually in February.

With reports from ABC News' Charles Herman.

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