ACTU goes after Qantas over bonus

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 8 : 24-Jun-19

The ACTU will lodge legal action against Qantas in the Fair Work Commission on 24 June over its payment of employee bonuses. The ACTU will allege that the airline is discriminating against employees on collective agreements, in that it will only pay a $2,000 bonus once employees sign on to Qantas-endorsed enterprise agreements; the ACTU notes that some collective agreements do not expire until late 2020. Former Qantas chairman Leigh Clifford noted at its 2018 AGM that the same conditions applied to its last three bonuses.

CORPORATES
ACTU, QANTAS AIRWAYS LIMITED – ASX QAN, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Rio moves to defer bonus for ex-CEO

Original article by Paul Garvey
The Australian – Page: 15 : 3-Jan-19

Rio Tinto is seeking to further postpone the payment of Sam Walsh’s last short and long-term incentive bonuses until an investigation into a scandal associated with the Simandou iron ore project is completed. The former CEO was due to receive half of his remaining incentive bonuses at the end of 2018; Rio Tinto had advised in February 2017 that payment of the final bonuses would be deferred. International agencies are investigating Rio Tinto’s payment of $US10.5 million ($15m) to a French consultant in 2011.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE, GREAT BRITAIN. SERIOUS FRAUD OFFICE, UNITED STATES. DEPT OF JUSTICE, PERTH MINT, AUSTRALIA COUNCIL FOR THE ARTS, MITSUI AND COMPANY LIMITED

We should have cut bonuses: CBA chair

Original article by Joyce Moullakis
The Australian – Page: 2 : 22-Nov-18

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia’s executive remuneration came under scrutiny by the financial services royal commission on 21 November. CBA chair Catherine Livingstone has conceded that the bank failed to reduce or withhold bonuses in 2016, despite a series of compliance breaches. She also acknowledged that it might have been appropriate for CBA to note in its latest annual report that former chairman David Turner had declined the board’s request to repay 40 per cent of his directors’ fees as a result of the compliance breaches.

CORPORATES
COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY

CommBank CEO Matt Comyn fronts banking royal commission

Original article by Alexis Carey
News.com.au – Page: Online : 20-Nov-18

Commonwealth Bank CEO Matt Comyn has told the financial services royal commission that the major bank has tended to react to misconduct rather than taking action to prevent it in the first place. Comyn also conceded that there are "inherent risks" associated with a staff bonus scheme. However, he struggled to explain why a fixed salary would not be sufficient for the majority of the bank’s employees. The royal commission’s interim report noted that variable pay can encourage a culture of misconduct in the banking sector.

CORPORATES
COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY, MACQUARIE GROUP LIMITED – ASX MQG, AMP LIMITED – ASX AMP, BENDIGO AND ADELAIDE BANK LIMITED – ASX BEN, AUSTRALIAN PRUDENTIAL REGULATION AUTHORITY, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION

Bonuses risk igniting ABC powder keg

Original article by Deborah Cornwall, Lilly Vitorovich
The Australian – Page: 3 : 7-Nov-18

ABC journalists have raised the prospect of industrial action over severe staff shortages at a time when the public broadcaster’s executives are receiving large bonuses. Members of the Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance’s ABC house committee have sought meetings with acting chairman David Anderson to express the journalists’ concerns, but he has declined to do so. Liberal senator Eric Abetz is also seeking an explanation for the ABC’s decision to give one executive a bonus of more than $230,000 in 2017-18.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION, MEDIA, ENTERTAINMENT AND ARTS ALLIANCE, LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA

Thorburn faces $1m pay cut in NAB overhaul

Original article by James Eyers
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 17 & 20 : 20-Sep-18

National Australia Bank will disclose more details of its revised executive pay structure when its annual remuneration report is released in November. Amongst other things, NAB will no longer take into account total shareholder return when determining executive bonuses, although return on equity will continue to be a key metric. NAB chairman Ken Henry says the new pay scheme is aimed at more closely aligning executive remuneration to customer service. CEO Andrew Thorburn is among the executives to be affected by the new remuneration policy.

CORPORATES
NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, AUSTRALIAN PRUDENTIAL REGULATION AUTHORITY, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY

Legal test looms over Qantas’ bonus bribes

Original article by Patrick Hatch
The Age – Page: 21 : 18-Sep-18

The Fair Work Commission may be asked to rule on the validity of its cash performance bonus scheme. The airline’s employees will be eligible for a cash bonus of $2,000 provided they sign a new enterprise bargaining agreement. Unions have expressed concern about a provision of the scheme which excludes all employees in a work group from receiving the bonus if one or more of them engages in conduct that causes harm to the airline. Unions believe that this may breach workplace laws, as the "harm" caused could potentially be interpreted to include protected industrial action.

CORPORATES
QANTAS AIRWAYS LIMITED – ASX QAN, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, UNIVERSITY OF ADELAIDE

Performance bonuses here to stay at ABC

Original article by Stephen Brook
The Australian – Page: 3 : 17-May-18

The ABC has defended its remuneration system in the wake of revelations that staff received bonuses totalling $A2.6m in 2017. A spokesman has indicated that fixed remuneration rates for ABC executives are consistent with market rates, while performance pay scales are below market rates. Communications Minister Mitch Fifield notes that federal government departments abolished executive bonus schemes in 2008, but the government has no power to direct the ABC to do so.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF COMMUNICATIONS AND THE ARTS, SPECIAL BROADCASTING SERVICE (SBS), NBN CO LIMITED, COMMUNITY AND PUBLIC SECTOR UNION

Call for clean-out of AMP board

Original article by Andrew White
The Australian – Page: 17 & 21 : 1-May-18

Institutional investors say further boardroom changes are needed at AMP following the resignation of chair Catherine Brenner in the wake of the banking royal commission’s revelations. First Super CEO Bill Watson still intends to vote against the election of three directors at the upcoming AGM, arguing that AMP directors must be held accountable. Australian Council of Superannuation Investors CEO Louise Davidson says AMP should also look at stripping bonuses from executives who were involved in the fees-for-no-service scandal. AMP has appointed Mike Wilkins as executive chairman.

CORPORATES
AMP LIMITED – ASX AMP, FIRST SUPER PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL OF SUPERANNUATION INVESTORS INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, ART GALLERY OF NEW SOUTH WALES, BORAL LIMITED – ASX BLD, COCA-COLA AMATIL LIMITED – ASX CCL, CLAYTON UTZ, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY, IMF BENTHAM LIMITED – ASX IMF, PHI FINNEY McDONALD, SHINE LAWYERS, SLATER AND GORDON LIMITED – ASX SGH, QUINN EMANUEL URQUHART AND SULLIVAN LP

APRA targets banker bonuses

Original article by Jonathan Shapiro
The Australian Financial Review – Page: W1 & W2 : 5-Apr-18

A review of remuneration in the banking, insurance and superannuation industry shows that senior executives are rarely penalised financially for poor risk management practices or misconduct among staff within their purview. Wayne Byers, the chairman of the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority – which undertook the review – says bank executives should be held more accountable, calling for their bonuses to be deferred or forgone. Frank Mirenzi of Moody’s Investors Service notes that many countries have cracked down on executive pay in the banking sector in the wake of the global financial crisis.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN PRUDENTIAL REGULATION AUTHORITY, MOODY’S INVESTORS SERVICE INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC