Christmas bonus? Make no mistake, pay is out of control

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- The flood of massive executive pay packages has me seeing things. The other day I mistakenly awarded former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. chief executive Hank Paulson $45 million in a brief story...

To sum up. Bankers make a lot more than you and me and are getting raises at a faster rate. Compare the average bonus to the real median U.S. household income of $46,326. Keep in mind that's a full year's income. Between 2004 and 2005 the median income grew 1.1%. Even in the Northeast where wages are generally higher, the median income for a family of four was $50,992, according to the Census Bureau.

To put it into more relative terms, Lloyd Blankfein could comfortably support 1,059 families of four, or 4,236 people, for a year with his bonus. The $16.5 billion Goldman Sachs investment pool could support 323,580 families, or 1.29 million people.

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