Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Bank of America (BAC) Bias Lawsuit Dismissed

The bias lawsuit against Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) by black financial advisers was dismissed by U.S. District Judge Robert Gettleman.

The advisers alleged their white counterparts were offered higher bonuses to stay on when the company merged with Merrill Lynch.

Strangely, the black brokers had complained that their bonuses were based on "production," or fees earned on client assets. Strange because they thought they didn't have to compete to earn their bonuses. It's not like this is a public service job where you don't have to produce in order to be retained.

Gettleman wrote in response to allegations of earlier discrimination at Merrill Lynch, "Knowledge of past and even present discrimination alone does not make it plausible that defendants actually adopted the advisor transition program with discriminatory intent."

He concluded there was no evidence Bank of America had designed the bonus program for the purpose of discriminating against anyone.

This case makes little sense, as it makes the black brokers filing it look as if because they aren't able to compete in the workplace with brokers who happen to be white, that they are being discriminated against.

Results aren't equal opportunity, performance is.

Bank of America was trading at $13.50, up $0.15, or 1.12 percent, as of 2:32 PM EDT.

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