Tuesday 25 March 2003

This is wrong

The two top executives at Edinburgh based Standard Life have given themselves bonuses of almost £500,000. Understandably policyholders are upset:
But last month millions of savers with Standard Life were told their bonuses had been cut for the third time in a year, with some payouts slashed by more than 50 per cent in some cases.

Plunging share prices have wiped an estimated £20 billion off the value of Standard Life’s with-profits fund in the past year, and the insurer took the drastic action to shore up its cash reserves.

Standard Life is mutually owned and the executives have more job security than those at shareholder owned companies. They shouldn't be taking bonuses of this magnitude in the present investment environment. I am myself a Standard Life policyholder but fortunately switched my investment from the "with profits" fund into the cash fund before the stock market slump. Those still in the with profits fund have lost heavily.

Give the bonuses back.