What if They Gave a Recruitment and Nobody Came?

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So what do you do when no one on the outside is interested in taking the reins of your troubled bank? Look inside, of course. That's what Bank of America's doing now that Robert Kelly's made it clear he's staying put at Bank of New York Mellon.

Bloomberg speculates BofA's search committee may now turn their sites on Chief Risk Officer Gregory Curl or consumer banking chief Brian Moynihan. If either of them take the job, the bank will at least have a CEO to replace Ken Lewis, who plans to leave this month. On the other hand, some investors say anyone recruited internally won't be able to restore investor confidence. And, FBR Capital Markets Analyst Paul Miller told Bloomberg TV, "A lot of outsiders wanted to break up BofA, which I think is one of the better solutions, but I think the board wanted to keep it intact."

Kelly had wanted a $20 million compensation package and the chairman and CEO titles. Those roles were split in April. Even though BofA isn't subject to executive pay limits now that it's paid back TARP funds, it remains sensitive to public perception of its compensation practices, says MarketWatch.

He's the latest in a line of executives to turn down the role, including Michael O'Neill and Eugene McQuade of Citigroup, William Winters of JPMorgan Chase, and Richard David of U.S. Bancorp.

BofA's search committee is expected to decide whether to proceed with an internal candidate within the next couple of days, The Wall Street Journal says.

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