Wed, Feb 15, 2012 - Page 11 News List

Macquarie cut 10% of Asia investment banking jobs


Macquarie Group Ltd, Australia’s biggest investment bank, cut about 10 percent of its investment banking workforce in Asia last week, two people with knowledge of the departures said.

Koichiro Yano, a financial institutions group banker in Tokyo, is among about 20 employees in Asia outside of Australia leaving Macquarie, the people said, asking not to be identified because the departures are not public.

Macquarie, which is mainly cutting vice presidents and some junior positions, will maintain an investment banking presence in 14 countries in Asia, one of the people said.

On Monday, Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ANZ), the third-largest bank in Australia, said it planned to eliminate about 1,000 jobs as it combats a slump in lending growth.

The Melbourne-based ANZ said the domestic cuts would be made by Sept. 30, involving primarily middle-management, back-office and support staff.

Macquarie said on Feb. 7 that slumping advisory fees would contribute to a 25 percent drop in profit for in the year ending on March 31.

Bank of America Corp and Nomura Holdings Inc have also fired investment bankers in Asia as Europe’s lingering credit crisis made companies reluctant to spend on acquisitions and unable to sell shares on stock markets.

Operating income at Macquarie Capital, the unit that includes mergers advisory and equity and debt capital markets, might drop 35 percent in the six months through March 31 from a year earlier, Macquarie said last week. The division has been “severely impacted by macroeconomic conditions,” according to a statement.

Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC (RBS) is seeking buyers for most of its advisory unit and might close the business if a sale fails.

RBS said last month it would cut about 4,800 jobs, including 3,500 at its investment bank, over the next three years, as the Edinburgh-based lender tries to sell its unprofitable cash equities and merger-advisory operations.

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