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Executives at Bankrupt Companies Scored $131 Million in Bonuses

  • Boards are looking for stability through restructuring process
  • U.S. has recently disputed about a dozen payouts, but in vain

Before the bankruptcies came the bonuses: $10 million at J.C. Penney Co., $25 million at Chesapeake Energy Corp., $1.5 million at Hertz Global Holdings Inc.

That’s how much was promised to executives only weeks or in some cases days before bankruptcy, according to a Bloomberg analysis of regulatory filings. Of the 100 or so major companies that have filed since the coronavirus shutdown began, 19 of them have committed to paying a total of $131 million in retention and performance bonuses, both before and after bankruptcies, a number that’s poised to climb as a record number of Americans are jobless and the pandemic spreads.