Deutsche Bank AG has started cutting at least 250 jobs globally at its corporate and investment bank as Germany’s largest lender seeks to keep a lid on expenses amid a sustained slide in the securities unit, according to people with direct knowledge of the matter.
The cuts are still taking place and could widen to more than 500, one person said. In the past two weeks, the bank trimmed senior and mid-level investment banking positions in locations including London and the U.S., the people said, declining to be identified as the details are private. They include Marc Benton, who oversaw European energy investment banking, and Evans Haji-Touma, who focused on sovereign wealth and public pension funds, according to the people.
Frankfurt-based Deutsche Bank is culling jobs as the investment bank is getting no closer to improving revenues and returns. Trading at the unit, headed by Marcus Schenck and Garth Ritchie, slumped 27 percent last quarter and fees from advising on deals and arranging debt and equity sales dipped 3 percent. The declines, coupled with bonus payments that Chief Executive Officer John Cryan said were on the “generous” side, helped push the business into the red.
The corporate finance unit for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, led by Alasdair Warren, felt some of the cuts, the people said. The departures also include Andrew Tusa, co-head of U.K. corporate broking and Jonathan Gold, a senior financial institutions banker in London, the people said.
Tusa declined to comment, as did a spokesman for Deutsche Bank. Haji-Touma, Gold and Benton couldn’t be reached via phone.
Deutsche Bank’s corporate and investment bank employed 17,251 front office full-time staff at the end of last year. Many of the unit’s problems are in its trading business, with fixed-income revenue dropping 29 percent and equities declining 25 percent last quarter. Advisory is faring better. The lender ranked ninth in advising on mergers globally in 2017, up one position from the previous year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Cryan is trying to motivate and retain top investment banking staff, while keeping a lid on costs following three straight years of losses. But with revenue at a seven-year low, even a relatively small increase in compensation can cause losses at the securities unit. Chief Financial Officer James von Moltke has urged a return to more disciplined cost management after the lender scrapped a target for this year.
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