Canada, U.S., money

Ever dream of Wall Street? Ever dream of a plush high-rise office, gaudy base salary and downtown health club membership? Of course you do, even at a time when bonuses, long the disdain of regular consumers and Occupy protestors, are expected to fall by up to 30 per cent this year, according to a recent compensation survey.

Yet how do Wall Street bonuses — any bonuses in the U.S., really — compare with their Canadian counterparts? To get a picture, MSN looked at the top five companies in each country by market cap, then sized up the bonuses* paid to their top executives. The results? American CEOs are positively festooned with year-end rewards, sure, though you might be surprised that Canadian chief execs aren't far behind.

* Canadian CEO bonus listings, including year-end cash rewards, stock options and company shares but not including annual salary and pension contributions, are from 2009, as compiled by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. U.S. CEO bonus listings are from 2010. All figures, including market cap readings accurate as of Nov. 9, 2011, are in USD (Canadian numbers have been converted using the Bank of Canada's average exchange rate for 2009.)

* Bing: Who is the world's highest-paid CEO?