Evening Standard - Bankers spend bonuses on a smooth recovery

City bankers are celebrating the return of big bonuses by lavishing thousands of pounds on post-credit crunch “refurbishment” of stress ravaged faces and bodies.London clinics favoured by well paid financial workers say they have seen a spike in appointments as job security and bonus hopes have grown. Many people delayed procedures to make themselves look younger or fitter during the downturn because they feared redundancy. Now they want to repair the damage wreaked on waistlines and faces during an even more anxious year than usual. One of the biggest increases in enquiries has been for “tummy tucks”, a procedure that costs at least £5,295. There was a 68 per cent rise last month compared with last year, according to The Harley Medical Group, which has a clinic near banks such as Credit Suisse, Deutsche and JP Morgan. Demand for “man boob” reductions, costing at least £4,000, is up and bookings for popular non-surgical procedures among women such as Botox injections are up by 20 per cent. As a whole enquiries are up by 24 per cent. Liz Dale, director of the group, said: “We noticed it at the beginning of September. In the City it had been quiet for at least six months. Now we’ve got people coming in again saying ‘make me look healthy and well’. They feel it’s good for their careers and their confidence.” Amanda Graham, who works for a City insurance firm, said: “I have had Botox for five years, usually three times a year. I haven’t had a treatment for over a year as I was tightening my purse strings. But I feel more confident that my job is safe so I booked in for Botox last week. It was long overdue and I look and feel great.” Despite outrage over City bonuses, payouts are expected to be well up on last year’s £3.6 billion and shared among fewer workers, with major banks making bumper profits since financial markets stabilised in the spring. ‘500K pay will get me Tummy Tuck’ Henry, a derivatives sales analyst at one of the City’s biggest investment banks, is having an abdominoplasty operation next month to remove excess skin around his stomach. He says: “Like a lot of people in banking I had got stuck in a rut with very long hours – I often do a 90-hour week – lots to eat and loads of travel. “I got to the stage where I was bloody enormous, not far off 22 stone. I went on a diet, cut out booze and joined a gym. I lost some serious weight fairly quickly and now I’m down to 16 stone. “But I was left with this apron of skin around my tummy. I went to see a surgeon, and I’m having the op done next month and it should sort it out. “The operation will cost between £8,000 and £8,500. It will probably be galling to hear this, but I’m on track for a fairly decent bonus this year. I will be very disappointed if it’s less than £500,000.”