(Reuters) - Citigroup Inc's top executives and Robert Rubin, a director and senior counselor at the firm, are ready to forgo their bonuses this year as the bank reels from the effects of the financial crisis, the Financial Times reported.
Rubin, a former U.S. treasury secretary in the Clinton administration, told the board he felt the funds that would have been used for his bonus could be better spent on other employees, according to a person close to Rubin, the paper reported.
The U.S. government's rescue of the bank made it almost impossible for the company's board to award cash bonuses to other senior executives, led by Chief Executive Vikram Pandit, people close to the situation told the paper.
Citigroup could not be immediately reached for comment.
No formal decision on bonuses would be taken until January, but Citigroup's executives had to make a significant gesture to defuse criticism from politicians and regulators, people familiar with the situation told the paper.
Rising dissent among employees, many of whom face redundancy or lower bonuses, has also weighed on the company's deliberations, the paper said.
Citigroup is trying to shore up investor confidence as it sells assets and sheds 52,000 jobs after winning a government rescue that should limit potential losses on $306 billion of troubled assets.
CEO Pandit has blamed Citigroup's problems on prior management's decision to expose the bank too heavily to U.S. real estate.
(Reporting by Pratish Narayanan in Bangalore; Editing by Erica Billingham)