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Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 05:24 PM   #1
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Do/Did you receive a bonus?

If so, how much of a role did it play in your ability to FIRE?
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 05:45 PM   #2
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Bone-us? Yeah, we get those... :P
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 06:42 PM   #3
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

No, I have never received a bonus as such.

I have received a cash award, but it was not enough to affect my retirement plans. Any cash award is quite welcome, though!
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 06:46 PM   #4
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wildcat
If so, how much of a role did it play in your ability to FIRE?
I got a half-dozen bonuses through the 1980s & early '90s ranging from $2400-$7200 (after tax witholding). Every bonus went straight into the ER portfolio without being spent on anything else. So did sea pay and most of sub pay.

I think that compounding gave us the extra boost of confidence to ER at what we later realized was just about the pit of the 2002 bear market.

Or at least it helped me decide not to get a job...
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 06:52 PM   #5
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Have not FIRE'd yet, but when I do the annual bonus will have a big role


Come on Wildcat, is there another reason people work in finance?

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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 07:00 PM   #6
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Both my DH and I receive annual bonuses and sometimes stock options from our IT jobs. They are a huge factor in our retirement, as they can boost our base pay by approximately 15-20%. For us, all bonuses & options go straight into the retirement pot. For others that I see at Megacorp, it's new cars and big trips... but we have different goals right now.
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 07:10 PM   #7
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

I did, but they weren't very big (federal employee).
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 07:14 PM   #8
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

I get 2 per year and is about 90% of my salary so far. I lucked out, am in both IT and Finance! So, I am enjoying it.

It would be much more useful if it didn't all go towards the wife's student loan debt, but even so, I'm glad it is there as opposed to paying off the debt with my hard earned sweat equity instead.

It is a mixed blessing in that I am a now a social democrat and a financial republican!
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 07:23 PM   #9
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Ranges from 10% to 75% of my total comp thus far. Huge impact on ability to FIRE.
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 07:28 PM   #10
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

There are no bonuses handed out at my work. They do this ghetto version of stock options where you get stock appreciation rights. Equates to about $500 a year after taxes. :P

I've gotten about $3k in the last few years in "merit" bonuses ("great job on project x!") but still a minor player. But they match my 401k to the tune of several thousand dollars a year, so I call it good.
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 07:45 PM   #11
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Bonuses are about 10% which go into savings.
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 07:54 PM   #12
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Yes

It has helped but it wont make a huge difference.
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 07:56 PM   #13
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Expect bonus to be about 10% of salary this year, however like many others it will have no significant impact on our ability to retire.
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 07:58 PM   #14
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

About 75% of my total comp comes as an annual bonus. The crazy compensation structure is probably the main reason I'm going to retire early. I started with a plan to live on my base and bank the bonus, because job security is not what my profession is known for. As the bonus grew I stayed with the original plan and now I'm putting away ~75% of my gross. If I got paid the same amount but saw the check every other week, I'm not sure I'd be saving as much.
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 08:42 PM   #15
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Up to 20%/year although never had more than 18% and it did enable DW to RE 3 years ago. I never budgeted for it and it always went into savings. Just about to receive this year's and it is 14%. (It's based mostly on Megacorp's performance).

2 more bonuses before RE :
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 09:40 PM   #16
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

$10,000 bonus -> $5,500 after tax, FICA. I don't think it make a significant difference toward ER.
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 10:25 PM   #17
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Bonus has been as high as 50% of base compensation for several years. This year it was more like 25%. It has been a huge boost to our RE plans. Tracy
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 10:45 PM   #18
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 3 Yrs to Go
About 75% of my total comp comes as an annual bonus. The crazy compensation structure is probably the main reason I'm going to retire early. I started with a plan to live on my base and bank the bonus, because job security is not what my profession is known for. As the bonus grew I stayed with the original plan and now I'm putting away ~75% of my gross. If I got paid the same amount but saw the check every other week, I'm not sure I'd be saving as much.
That never stopped many of my former colleagues. They borrowed the anticipated bonus throughout the year. :
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-15-2007, 11:57 PM   #19
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

I only ever got one bonus check, and that was $500, about 25 years ago.
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?
Old 05-16-2007, 12:19 AM   #20
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Re: Do/Did you receive a bonus?

In our household bonuses and stock option exercises are mostly used to boost the retirement account, though some money is occasionally siphoned aside to pay for a treat (like a vacation).

How much does it help with FIRE? For us it's a small percentage --- most of our savings come out of the regular paychecks --- but even small contributions do their part through the power of compounding.
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