Financial Services Firms Could See Benefits Cuts

Nearly half (49%) of 63 surveyed CFOs at financial services firms said their companies are reducing employee bonuses in the next six months, according to Grant Thornton LLP.

Nearly four in 10 of the CFOs said their firms are reducing salary increases, and stock options and other forms of equity-based compensation (38% each), according to a release of the survey results. But salaries are not the only thing falling; almost a third (31%) of survey respondents said employees’ 401(k) match is being reduced and 27% reported health care benefits are being reduced.

CFOs also indicated disability benefits and life insurance benefits are being reduced (10% each).

Nearly eight in 10 CFOs (79%) indicated they were most concerned about the cost of employee benefits.

In spite of their actions, the survey found CFOs are more confident about the economy. Forty-six percent said they believe the economy will improve in the next six months, and 49% indicated they expect their companies’ financial prospects to improve over the same time period.

Around one-quarter (26%) of respondents said their company will increase hiring in the next six months, while 60% indicated they expect headcount to remain the same.

Grant Thornton LLP conducted the biannual national survey from September 21 through October 2 among 846 CFOs and senior comptrollers from public and private companies, of which 63 were from financial services companies.