Barclays bank cuts 1,200 jobs at investment arm

21st January 2016, Comments 0 comments

Troubled British bank Barclays announced a new round of job cuts Thursday, axing 1,200 positions at its investment banking division, exiting Russia and closing offices across Asia.

The job losses, confirmed by a bank spokesman, are the first round of cutbacks unveiled by new chief executive Jes Staley, and come on top of 7,000 jobs cut since 2014.

The latest cull will fall mostly on Asia, where Barclays will shut offices in Australia, South Korea, Taiwan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines, and cover those countries from other locations.

Barclays will also completely exit Russia and handle that country from London.

The lender's investment division will however continue to focus on its two home markets in the UK and United States.

Fewer than 100 positions in the British capital will be affected by the restructuring.

The bank will maintain offices in China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Singapore and India, while keeping its derivatives and prime services business in Asia.

"With these actions, we are accelerating the investment bank strategy outlined in 2014, focusing on its core strengths and running the business for returns," Barclays said in a brief statement that did not specify the number of job cuts.

"We continue to build on the business's dual home markets in the UK and US and remain committed to a strong presence in Asia and EMEA, consistent with operating a leading global investment bank within the Barclays Group."

The appointment of 58-year-old American investment banker Staley late last year was seen as an attempt by the bank to focus anew on its investment arm.

Barclays is one of several banks implementing job cuts in a tough environment for investment banks, as slowing global growth and stricter capital rules affect lenders.

Staley is the former chief executive of JP Morgan's investment bank and became Barclays boss on December 1.

Barclays added on Thursday that it expected to report "broadly flat" income at its investment banking arm on March 1, when it will post the group's annual results.

Barclays' investment banking wing was rocked in 2012 by the Libor rate-rigging scandal.

The recent stock market turmoil and commodity price rout is expected to have played a part in the decision to further scale-back its investment banking presence.

Barclays shares rallied 2.24 percent to close at 186.13 pence in an upbeat London market with the FTSE 100 index surging 1.77 percent highter to 5,773 points.

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© 2016 AFP

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