Big banks look to raise bonuses

JIJI

The three major banking groups are expected to increase bonuses for fiscal 2013, which starts next month, from the levels for the current fiscal year, it was learned Wednesday.

It would be the first time in five years for all three of the top banking groups — Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc., Mizuho Financial Group Inc. and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. — to raise bonuses for their employees.

The last time the three together raised bonuses was fiscal 2008. The previous unified hikes were decided in spring 2008, before the collapse of U.S. investment bank Lehman Brothers that autumn that helped deepen the global financial crisis.

Mitsubishi UFJ is seen to accept its labor union’s request for a 1 percent hike in fiscal 2013 bonuses, the fourth straight yearly rise.

Mizuho is expected to raise its bonuses by 5 percent, the first hike in five years.

Sumitomo Mitsui’s labor union plans to demand a 5 percent hike. If accepted, it would be the first increase in two years.