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Wall Street’s Bosses Reassert Themselves With the Return of Annual Culls

Even junior bankers gained ground during the pandemic. But now the bosses—from David Solomon at Goldman Sachs on down—are preparing to shed staff and bring down bonuses.
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Photo Illustration: 731; Photos: Dania Maxwell (Solomon); Alamy (figures); 123RF (hand)

JPMorgan Chase and Co. executives were in a bind. Amid a flurry of job-hopping on Wall Street last year, Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon had told the bank’s US staff it was time to return to offices on a regular basis. But with Covid-19 cases climbing at the time, some managers were reluctant to take a hard line with staff who could quit. A number of divisions were already wrestling with resignations and racing to refill positions.

So an informal strategy emerged to shield the rank and file from the CEO’s dictate without antagonizing him, according to people with direct knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be named discussing internal practices.