April 27th, 2009
10:41 AM ET

Money for Nothing

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Paul Krugman
The New York Times

On July 15, 2007, The New York Times published an article with the headline “The Richest of the Rich, Proud of a New Gilded Age.” The most prominently featured of the “new titans” was Sanford Weill, the former chairman of Citigroup, who insisted that he and his peers in the financial sector had earned their immense wealth through their contributions to society.

Soon after that article was printed, the financial edifice Mr. Weill took credit for helping to build collapsed, inflicting immense collateral damage in the process. Even if we manage to avoid a repeat of the Great Depression, the world economy will take years to recover from this crisis.

All of which explains why we should be disturbed by an article in Sunday’s Times reporting that pay at investment banks, after dipping last year, is soaring again — right back up to 2007 levels.

Why is this disturbing? Let me count the ways.


Filed under: Economy • Paul Krugman
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Sharon Kitchen

    Citi group should regroup with out these WEALTHY individuals are just go away.

    I have not used a credit card in over 9 years.

    I have not missed it at all.

    If the banks do not get right.......I will cash my workcheck and not use them either.

    no enterest from me ...........no way.

    April 27, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  2. Terry, TX

    I tried to "Read More" of the article...if I have to log in to read an article ..apparently it is not worth reading. Well might I add with the little I was able to read when you stopped with "Why is this disturbing? Let me count the ways." Well let me, is it because Fannie and Freddie got bonuses also since January...how about GE getting taxpayer money, more than the auto world, and by also owning NBC and MSNBC and supporting Obama hen their worst CEO in history, Jeffery Immelt, gets a spot on the White House economic advisory board....hmmm.....could it be Geithner still won't let the banks return taxpayers money ....hmmm.

    April 27, 2009 at 1:46 pm |
  3. Michael C. McHugh

    I can't think of anyone who deserves a pay raise more than the crooks who helped wreck the world economy. To top it off, they are paying themselves with $$$ from the government. Anyone could make a profit with the Treasury and Federal Reserve giving them trillions of dollars, so why not pay themselves whatever they feel like using public funds?

    April 27, 2009 at 1:12 pm |
  4. Melissa

    Anyone else find this disgusting and despicable? They have learned nothing from all this. THIS is why we need greater federal regulation. No more kissing butt to big companies. Regulate them. Stop the madness.

    April 27, 2009 at 1:09 pm |