Investment banks and brokerages across Asia have launched a sweeping round of job cuts as Europe’s debt crisis and China’s economic slowdown bite into the region’s financial activity.
Speaking to bankers and other industry sources, Reuters was able to confirm at least 50 people were let go in the past three weeks, a cull that includes senior expatriates as well as junior bankers. The cuts mainly target the equities business, with more layoffs expected in coming weeks.
CLSA , Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE), Goldman Sachs (GS.N), and UBS (UBSN.VX) were among the banks and brokerages that cut jobs, the sources said.
“In response to a market environment far worse than anticipated and considerable over-capacity in the industry, we have made the difficult decision to make some positions redundant,” said Anna Tehan, a spokeswoman for CLSA.
CLSA, an Asia focused brokerage, has prided itself over the years in keeping cuts low, with employees previously taking voluntary pay cuts to stay on board.
“A very small percentage of our workforce is affected, from across all areas of the business,” Tehan said, adding that the firm would not comment on specific reduction numbers.
Two sources at CLSA said tens of jobs were cut across the region in the last two weeks, with one saying specifically they included 25 staff in Hong Kong, and 10 in India across sales, core research and the new India Reality Research division.
“Banks have cut 5-7 percent of staff, which is unusual as this cut usually happens in November and December,” David Azar, managing director, equities at recruitment firm Pemberton Stewart, wrote in an e-mail, describing the round of layoffs.
“We see more cuts in the next few months.”…