The value of bonuses paid in the financial and business industry fell 9% to £13bn last year, according to official figures.
Despite the fall, they made up 36% of all bonuses paid in the UK - even though just 4% of all employees work in the industry, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.
The average bonus per employee in the finance and insurance industry was £12,000 - substantially higher than in any other part of the economy.
But this remains significantly below the levels seen between 2006 and 2008, when bonuses peaked before the onset of the financial crisis.
The rest of the economy helped drive a 3% rise in the total amount of bonuses paid out across all sectors between April 2011 and March 2012.
This increase to £37bn equates to an average of around £1,400 per employee, the ONS calculated.
The professional, scientific and information industries made the largest contribution to the rise in bonus payments, paying £600m more in bonuses last year compared to 2010.
Hand-outs in the private sector remain drastically higher than those in the public sector.
Between 2011 and 2012, private sector bonuses averaged £1,700, while the average public sector worker's (not including those at the temporarily nationalised banks) was just £100.
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