In recent weeks, several of the world’s major banks have cited FX traders as targets for redundancy, the most recent being Credit Suisse (NYSE:CS).
Following Barclays’ announcement last week that it is to shed 19,000 staff across its entire operations, 6,500 to 7,500 from within its investment banking division, Reuters has today reported that at least six foreign exchange employees at Credit Suisse in London and New York, including head of FX spot trading in London Danny Wise, have left the Swiss bank in a cost-cutting drive, a source familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.
Their departure is part of cost cuts in the bank’s Macro Products Group within its Fixed Income, Currencies and Commodities (FICC) division and is not related to a global probe into allegations of collusion and price-rigging in the foreign exchange market, the source said.
Wise, the highest profile of the six, had joined from Barclays in 2011. He was also part of a group of chief dealers from banks in London who met up to four times a year with senior Bank of England officials to discuss the main issues and events affecting the currency market.
Reuters continued to report that thee job cuts represent a “tweaking” of Credit Suisse’s fixed income division following a broader and deeper shake-up in October last year, the source said.
The five other Credit Suisse employees to have departed are: Zain Iqbal, analyst, FX options trading in London; Arran Manu, analyst, FX spot trading in London; Monika Dasani, vice president, FX hedge fund sales in London; Mark Astley, director, senior FX strategist in London; Martin Amann, director, hedge fund FX sales in New York.
The bank’s revenues from bond trading in the first quarter of this year fell 25 percent from the same period a year earlier, driving overall investment banking profits down 36 percent, the bank said in April. It is clearly a tough time for FX desks within banks, however with Barclays having wielded the axe across so many departments, FX traders under its employ are keen to stay put as the bank is renowned for high remuneration packages for its London-based FX traders, despite its fall in fortunes compared to rivals RBS and HSBC, which pay less but have had a steadier entry into this year.
Credit Suisse dropped out of the ranking of the world’s top 10 FX banks this year, according to a poll by Euromoney. London is the hub of the global FX market, accounting for around 40 percent of its $5.3 trillion-a-day (3.15 trillion pounds) turnover.