MF Global's mega payout to boss

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The Independent Online

Jon Corzine was paid $8.35m (£5.3m) for running MF Global in the year leading up to its spectacular collapse, according to documents filed with a New York bankruptcy court.

But $5.35m of that was in the form of share options which became worthless when Mr Corzine's disastrous bets on eurozone debt sank the brokerage firm on Halloween last year.

The chunky pay package was of a piece with Mr Corzine's plan to turn MF Global into an investment banking powerhouse along the lines of Goldman Sachs, where he was chief executive in the nineties.

He was also in line for a severance package worth $12.1m if he left for "good reason" or was fired "without cause". The documents reveal that MF Global's compensation committee had rated Mr Corzine's performance "exemplary" earlier in the year.

More than six months after MF Global's collapse, bankruptcy trustees are still trying to trace around $1bn that is missing from customer accounts at the brokerage. The money, which was supposed to be properly segregated from the rest of MF Global's trading activities, disappeared in the chaotic final days when customers and trading partners panicked about the company's exposure to European sovereign debt.