(Corrects paragraph 4 to sources said from the bank said)
By Jessica Jaganathan and Florence Tan
SINGAPORE Jan 16 Morgan Stanley has laid
off two vice-presidents and one or two other employees in its
commodities division as part of a global plan to shed staff and
cut costs, sources familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.
The move comes after the bank has said it would not give up
on the fixed income, currency and commodities trading business,
known as "FICC" in Wall Street circles, and wanted to boost
market share in FICC by two percentage points.
Morgan Stanley declined to comment.
The sixth-largest U.S. bank by assets plans to slash 1,600
jobs, a move that may be the first of a new round of layoffs at
large investment banks as they reassess businesses in the face
of new regulations and capital standards, sources familiar with
the matter said earlier this month..
In Asia, fewer than five people will be axed from the bank's
commodity staff of less than 60, the sources familiar with the
At least two of those retrenched are from its oil trading
unit, industry sources said, though this could not be confirmed.
The restructuring resulted from a review of the bank's
commodities business needs in the region and reflected changing
market conditions, the sources familiar with the matter said.
"Banks need to stay nimble, especially with regard to their
commodities operations given reduced market liquidity and
heightened cost structures," one of the sources said.
Global investment banks have been shedding staff to reduce
costs since the 2008 financial crisis, but the latest round of
cuts has been prompted by stringent U.S. regulations designed to
limit excessive risk-taking after the crisis.
(Additional reporting by Seng Li Peng and Melanie Burton;
editing by Jane Baird)