ICAP's European government bonds head leaves - sources

LONDON, July 10 Wed Jul 10, 2013 10:55am EDT

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LONDON, July 10 (Reuters) - The head of European government bonds at ICAP has left the company, two sources with knowledge of the matter said, as the British broker pushes ahead with a cost-cutting plan to mitigate slower trading volumes.

London-based John King, who joined ICAP in 2005 after working at rival Tullett Prebon, is one of a handful of brokers to have left the company in recent weeks, one of the sources said, asking not to be named.

It is not clear if King, who could not immediately be reached for comment, will be replaced. ICAP declined to comment.

The company said at its annual results in May that it planned to increase cost-cutting by up to 120 million pounds over three years, including more staff cuts.

Like many inter-dealer brokers, who act as the middlemen between buyers and sellers of bonds, currencies and other financial assets, ICAP is battling a big drop in trading by its clients since the 2008 financial crisis.

In the year to end-March, when ICAP delivered 60 million pounds in savings, the company cut 147 jobs, trimming headcount to 4,976. The number of brokers fell by 152 to 2,195. This included the departure of 344 voice brokers.

ICAP CEO Michael Spencer said on Wednesday it was too early to predict a sustained upturn in trading for the year ahead, despite volatility in U.S. bond markets triggering a jump in the buying and selling of some assets since May.

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