Deutsche Bank Cuts 18,000 Staff, Including Aussie Workers
Germany's Deutsche Bank wants to 'reinvent' itself as a company and cut costs by 25 percent by 2022, with local jobs on the chopping block.
On Monday, the bank took its first step towards this by starting to wind down its international equity trading section -- and cutting the jobs of 18,000 staff members across the globe, including workers in Australia, in the process.
The bank estimates this will save a whopping $11.9 billion in coming years.
Deutsche Bank's Australian website says its Sydney office has about 700 employees. It's estimated the company had 90,000 staff before the cuts.
Some Deutsche Bank staff members told Reuters they were called into a brief meeting and told their jobs had been cut. All staff were issued with a letter informing them of their redundancy and then asked to leave almost immediately.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports at least 50 jobs are expected to be axed from the Sydney office in the preliminary 'reinvention' stages, however, it is unclear if jobs will be cut at the other Australian offices in Melbourne and Perth.
Deutsche Bank confirmed on Sunday it was closing parts of its trading businesses, with staff in its equities division in Sydney and Hong Kong among the first to be told their roles would go.
“If you have a job for me, please let me know,” a banker leaving the Hong Kong office said on Monday.
Staff leaving in Hong Kong were holding envelopes with the bank’s logo. Three employees took a picture of themselves beside a Deutsche Bank sign outside, hugged and then hailed a taxi.
“They give you this packet and you are out of the building,” said one equities trader.
“The equities market is not that great so I may not find a similar job, but I have to deal with it,” said another.
The cuts are expected to impact the New York and London offices the most.
At the bank’s Wall Street office, staff impacted by the cuts were summoned to the cafeteria to learn of their fate.
Hundreds of staff were informed during the meetings that their positions were being cut, sources within the bank told Reuters. They also received details of their redundancy packages. One source said staff could be seen saying their goodbyes to colleagues upon leaving the cafeteria.
Speaking outside the bank’s office, one employee told Reuters the cuts had been anticipated for weeks.
“People have been planning their next moves but it’s a tough market,” the person said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
A few hours after the Hong Kong staff left, workers were seen leaving Deutsche Bank’s office in London.
“I was terminated this morning, there was a very quick meeting and that was it,” said one IT worker, who left while Deutsche Bank chief executive Christian Sewing was inside the building doing a call with media.
Few staff wanted to speak outside the bank’s London office, but trade was picking up at a nearby pub around lunchtime.
“I got laid off, where else would I go,” said a man who had just lost his job in equity sales.
Deutsche spokespeople in Hong Kong and London declined to comment on specific details about the number of departures but said they would try to support people being made redundant.