Those who cater to the high-end luxury shoppers in New York don't just have the Christmas season to worry about. They are now waiting to see how the Wall Street bonuses will be spent. Bonuses seem to be down so far this year, a tough one in which many banks cut jobs as they dealt with losses caused by fallout from the subprime mortgage market. Reuters say that headhunters have reported that payouts for some of the most successful fixed income traders this year were flat to down 5 percent and some were down 10 percent to 20 percent.
This could be bad news for the real estate and art markets as well as luxury retailers including jewelers and auto dealers. Even those who did get a healthy bonus may not be in a shopping mood. Many in financial services are also fretting over job security and may put their bonus money into savings rather than celebratory spending.