When MJ Gleeson chief exec Paul Wallwork announced a pre-tax loss of £21m last month, he warned of more job cuts to follow the 335 already made this year.

His £70k bonus - announced this week - must have been pretty hard to swallow for those already shown the door.

The company is at pains to point out that the figure - on top of his basic salary of £293,000 - is what he's entitled to for hitting performance targets and was 24% of his possible haul. It was the result of "organisational objectives other than the achievement of pre-tax profits," it said.

It was a similar tale with Redrow recently.

It fails to acknowledge the issue of perception. The current financial carnage has seen the debate widen beyond a facile row about fat cat bosses.

Wallwork comes across as a likeable and down-to-earth character; not a fat cat. This is just 70 grand's worth of bad PR.

Even the uber-capitalists at Goldman Sachs seem to have got the message.