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Bankers to See Bonuses Plunge Amid Drop in Mergers, Stock Sales

  • Incentive pay for M&A bankers poised to drop as much as 20%
  • ‘There will be a lot of unhappy people,’ Alan Johnson says
A Wall Street street sign in front of the New York Stock Exchange in New York.

A Wall Street street sign in front of the New York Stock Exchange in New York.

Photographer: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg

Bonus season is looking grim on Wall Street, with year-end incentive pools expected to drop sharply across the finance industry amid a pullback in mergers and acquisitions, persistent inflation and the threat of a potential recession.

Bankers advising on M&A are likely to see their bonuses decline as much as 20% this year, while their counterparts in underwriting will probably have the largest drop, with their incentive pay plunging as much as a 45%, according to a closely watched report from compensation consultant Johnson Associates Inc. released Tuesday.