The $35,000 toilet bowl

Despite the jaw-dropping revelations of Thain's profligacy in the face of economic crisis (and perhaps also legal restrictions in the case of those bonuses), the former executive showed no lack of hubris but scant remorse in an interview with CNBC on 27 January, laying blame for the furniture spree on his Merrill predecessor Stanley O'Neal's violation of the investment bank's "general décor" and claiming the $4 billion bonus payout was necessary to retain key staff. (Why a staff overseeing a

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