TEN THOUSAND bankers will lose their jobs at Swiss giant UBS over the next two years, the bank revealed yesterday, as the group cuts back on investment banking operations.
Over 100 London staff were hit immediately, largely in fixed income units. Yesterday morning the unsuspecting employees were intercepted at the reception of their City offices and escorted up to human resources to be given the news. The abrupt system was designed to keep staff away from the trading floor, and prevent access to bank and client funds.
Those staff have two weeks to apply for other positions within the bank, and are still being paid as the mandatory official consultation is carried out. But a source close to the process said they are almost certain to be dismissed formally in the coming weeks.
“Maybe one or two of the hundred could find a job internally, but it is very unlikely,” he told City A.M.
“This is pretty much the end of their careers in UBS.”
Of the 10,000 jobs being lost, 2,500 will be in Switzerland, while the rest will largely fall in London and New York, where much of the investment banking activities are carried out. The staff were given a letter from HR boss Marc Montanaro to tell them to keep out of the building and away from colleagues and clients.
“You will not be required to continue to perform your current duties at this time. We have therefore taken the decision that you will not be required to attend the office and will be placed on special leave from today until further notice,” the letter read.
It added the firm offers support for staff, including a counselling and advice hotline, and HR services to look for a new role internally.
The investment banking industry received a double blow as German giant Deutsche Bank increased its planned job cuts to 1,993, up almost one hundred on the 1,900 announced in July.
You will not be required to continue to perform your current duties at this time. We have therefore taken the decision that you will not be required to attend the office and will be placed on special leave from today until further notice....We appreciate that the communication today may have been unexpected and that this period may be a difficult time for you....During this period of special leave, you should not enter the premises of UBS (or any operating division) unless you are asked to do so. In addition you should not initiate any contact with clients of any UBS entities.