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More blood-letting for Europe's banks?

Tuesday, December 22, 2015 - 01:39

After tens of thousands of job cuts in 2015, Europe's banks may are bracing for a further round of culls as regulation, anaemic growth and technology forces them to find more savings. David Pollard reports.

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Bankers have got used to a bit of bashing in the years since the financial crash. That's by the public of course. And they're not the only ones. Low growth, low rates, technology and regulators also getting the cudgels out. With a mounting casualty rate of job losses for the sector. CMC's Jasper Lawler. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CMC MARKETS ANALYST, JASPER LAWLER, SAYING: "Banks are not designed to cope with a zero-interest rate environment. Margins on lending really get squeezed. They still have, particularly in Europe, a lot of bad loans on the books, and so they're hesitant to loan anyway.'' 130,000 jobs have been cut since June of this year alone. Compare that to 78,000 across Europe's largest banks for 2013 and 14 combined. Rabobank was the latest to wield the axe - 9,000 job losses this month. Deutsche, Unicredit, Credit Suisse, HSBC and Standard Chartered among others doing similar. Overall, though, Europe's banks said to be slow in restructuring when compared to their US rivals. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CMC MARKETS ANALYST, JASPER LAWLER, SAYING: "There's also just a lot more regional banks, adding a bit more competition within America, which we don't have so much in Europe. There's a bit more fragmentation if you like, and perhaps European banks could do with a bit more competition." BNP Paribas is thought likely to cull as it seeks 20% cost cuts in its investment bank. Barclays, too, could shed more staff. Its former CEO, Antony Jenkins, has said that, across the sector, half of jobs could go over the next decade because of technology and regulation. 2016, then, bound to see the blood letting go on.

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More blood-letting for Europe's banks?

Tuesday, December 22, 2015 - 01:39