Retreat gives bankers the chance to blow their bonuses

Retreat gives bankers the chance to blow their bonuses

It’s easy to feel sorry for top bankers isn’t it?

In this age of austerity, job losses and home repossessions, the worry of how to spend their multi-million-dollar bonuses must be a real problem. I imagine they spend many a sleepless night tossing and turning on their swan-feather pillows, wondering how best to spend their wealth.

Well, fortunately a company has come to the rescue. A group of ex-bankers has created a new retreat to help fellow high-rollers get away from it all.

The Legacy Process provides runs a week-long residential retreat in Australia that offer bankers “physical, mental, emotional and spiritual” support.

How has the pain and suffering of these poor fellows been overlooked for so long? Did no-one see the signs? When they started drinking Chateau Pétrus straight from the bottle did we not worry? When they downgraded their Rolls-Royce Phantom to a Bentley Intercontinental did we not realise it was a cry for help?

The company said it wants to provide a service for bankers “against a high-stress backdrop of restructuring, global volatility and diminished bonuses”.

I wonder if those feeling the high-stress of “diminished bonuses” include RBS’ boss John Hourican, who is line to receive up to US$9 million while overseeing 3,500 job losses. Or maybe the retreat will get a call from Barclays CEO Bob Diamond, who could receive around US$15m – more than seven times his salary? It seems unlikely.

But I shouldn’t mock. In fairness, The Legacy Process does appear to have its heart in the right place, offering advice on how to start charitable and sustainable businesses, which can’t be a bad thing. It should also be mentioned that it donates 10% of profits to charity.

But at a cost of nearly US$20,000 for week at the retreat, I’d suggest the bankers could console themselves considerably faster if they donated the entire fee to charity, or to the people really affected by the financial crisis – those who have lost their jobs or had their homes repossessed. Or maybe they could just buy another bottle of Pétrus.

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