Bank of America cuts senior ranks in Asia
Asia Pacific – Bank of America-Merrill Lynch (BAC.N) will cut one-fifth of its managing directors across its investment banking offices in the APAC region.
Foreign banks in Asia have begun to lay off more experienced workers after a string of job cuts conducted last year as costs continue to soar, according to Reuters.
Of BAC.N’s 75 Asian managing directors, 15 will leave by the end of March, with veteran employees also not being spared the rod. One prominent figure, Michael Cho, a veteran Merrill Lynch Asia M&A banker, will be among those who will be given the sack.
Managing directors, known as one of the top titles in investment banks, can earn between US$1 million (S$1.29m) and US$3 million (S$3.8m) a year.
However, during the period of business restructuring, the most expensive employees are often rid off first in a bid to cut costs. BAC.N disclosed its cost cutting measures –the “New BAC” – had come into force on Monday and were set to reduce 30,000 jobs globally.
Other large banks across the world have also declared plans to shave off more than 125,000 jobs this year, according to Reuters.
Earlier this Monday, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley also fired analysts and brokers at their Australian operations, two sources with direct knowledge of the cuts revealed.
Global job cuts have also been matched with poor hiring intentions in APAC markets, which are no longer as profitable as they used to be.
“The driver of the slowdown in growth is primarily banking globally. Whilst a quarter ago we were still seeing a strong banking recruitment market in Singapore, China or Hong Kong, we’re not any more,” Paul Venables, Hays’ finance director, said.
The recruitment company reported hiring plans in Asian financial centres such as Singapore and Hong Kong have slowed down significantly in the final quarter of 2011.
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