At companies deemed too big to fail, there's a delicate balance to be found between paying enough to retain talented staff and soothing public anger about big taxpayer bailouts. "Pay Czar" Kenneth Feinberg (he dislikes the term, but it's stuck) believes he’s getting the balance right.
Feinberg is the Treasury Department’s special master for executive compensation. In his role, Feinberg negotiates the pay for executives at the companies that have received “extraordinary assistance” from the Treasury’s Troubled Asset Relief Program. He recently announced pay cuts for the top executives at five companies that have received substantial federal government assistance: AIG, Chrysler, Chrysler Financial, GM and GMAC. He talks to The Takeaway about his efforts to curb excessive pay.