Trading Places

Inside views on the jobs market

When it pays to take a break

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Usually when a company announces dreaded plans to “cut costs” or “restructure”, it’s a sure sign a new batch of employees are about to be axed. But in a refreshing new take on saving money in the corporate world, one company has decided to move in a decidedly unique direction.

The term is “career break“, a solution that Irish Life & Permanent’s banking division has come up with in a bid to slash costs, not jobs. The plan offers employees $25,000 to $45,140 to take a 2- or 3-year “break” from their jobs, thus cutting expenses without actually firing anyone. The company didn’t say how many employees are planning to accept the offer — nor did it mention whether said jobs would still exist after the “break” was over — but it hopes the plan will appeal to bankers looking for more flexibility in their careers.

Irish Life may be on to something — at the very least, it may prevent some nasty lawsuits. More and more financial firms are being legally targetted by disgruntled ex-employees seeking lost wages and benefits, lawyers say.

Granted, most firms are still taking the old-fashioned approach to cost-cutting. Sources say Goldman Sachs — already on a firing streak in recent weeks — is planning to cut another 10 percent of its investment bankers in Tokyo. In Russia, the recent rash of deep job cuts prompted one banker to say, “The best bonus you can have in Moscow right now is to have a job at all.”

The tricky business of bonuses

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In these dismal economic times, nothing comes in handy quite like a 5-step program to reclaiming your bonus. Of course, delicacy is key.  With job cuts spreading like wild fire and the Treasury’s seemingly never-ending bailout, everyday taxpayers aren’t going to be rooting for you and your six-figure paycheque.

But as Bloomberg‘s Michael Lewis cheekily points out, all is not lost. You just need to rethink your strategy:

Job Bank – Nov.10

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The following financial services industry appointments were announced on Nov.10, linked where possible to personal profiles on LinkedIn. To inform us of other job changes, please e-mail moves@thomsonreuters.com.

GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP INC

Goldman Sachs has identified the six equity analysts fired by the company. Ousted are William Tanona, who covered companies such as JPMorgan Chase & Co; Deane Dray, who followed Honeywell International Inc; Charles Chon; Ajay Kejriwal; Lawrence Keusch and Peter Wahlstrom.

Job Bank – Nov. 7

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The following financial services industry appointment was announced on November 7, linked where possible to personal profiles on Linkedin. To inform us of other job changes, please e-mail moves@thomsonreuters.com.

FRIENDS PROVIDENT PLC

The British life insurer named Evelyn Bourke, formerly CFO of Standard Life UK Financial Services, as its chief financial officer.

Now’s a good time to learn Arabic

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Out of work Wall Street bankers are flocking to some seemingly unlikely places to get a job.  Executives at the Reuters Middle East Investment Summit say they’ve been bombarded with resumes from bankers scrambling to leave New York and London for opportunities in the Gulf.

The boom in interest marks a sharp turnaround for a region once hard-pressed to attract top talent, a problem made worse by a relatively young population.  But bad news on Wall Street is good news for the Gulf.

Can Obama save Wall Street?

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It’s funny how the stock market manages to tell a story. This week’s euphoric pre-election surge is all but a memory now, with stocks back in their all-too-familiar slump. If Wall Street could talk, it would be saying: ”You’ve got your work cut out for you, Obama.”

Indeed, the President-elect faces what is likely the most daunting list of challenges ever faced by an incoming administration — and America’s precarious job situation is chief among them. A report by outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas indicates that planned layoffs surged to their highest level in nearly five years during October, with cuts in the finance industry leading the way.  Meanwhile, the private job sector took a hit to the tune of 157,000 lost jobs last month, with signs pointing to further deterioration to come.

Job Bank – Nov.6

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The following financial services industry appointment was announced on November 6, linked where possible to personal profiles on Linkedin. To inform us of other job changes, please e-mail moves@thomsonreuters.com.

DEUTSCHE BANK

Deutsche Bank has appointed Michele Gissi and Roger Naylor as co-heads of its global equity derivatives unit, replacing Richard Carson. Carson, along with Nino Kjellman, former head of Asia equity derivatives, and Andrew Kent, a trader in equity derivatives, are leaving the company.

Job Bank – Nov.5

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The following financial services industry appointments were announced on Nov. 5, linked where possible to personal profiles on LinkedIn. To inform us of other job changes, please e-mail moves@thomsonreuters.com.

LEHMAN BROTHERS

Lehman Brothers Holdings Chief Executive Richard Fuld will step down from that post by year’s end, a spokesman for the bankrupt financial firm said. Fuld will continue as nonmanagement chairman of the board after leaving. A new CEO was not named.

Job Bank – Nov.4

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The following financial services industry appointments were announced on November 4, linked where possible to personal profiles on LinkedIn. To inform us of other job changes, please e-mail moves@thomsonreuters.com.   DEUTSCHE BANK  William Curley and Anthony Viscardi, along with four other FIG specialists, have joined the firm’s global banking division in the Financial Institutions Group, responsible for mortgage finance sector coverage. All six hires were formerly at Lehman Brothers. Matthew Monahan has been hired as a director, Peter Salwin and Daniel Zimbaldi have been hired as vice presidents, and Brendan Sheldon has joined as an associate.   NEW YORK FED
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York has hired the former chief risk officer of Bear Stearns Cos, Michael Alix, to advise on bank supervision. Alix, whose appointment was effective Nov 3, will serve as a senior adviser to William Rutledge in the Bank Supervision Group.Alix was at Merrill Lynch & Co before joining Bear Stearns in 2006.   OCTOPUS INVESTMENTS LTD
The investment company said it appointed Karl Jentoft as marketing director, with immediate effect. Prior to joining Octopus, Jentoft was chief executive and founder of City Living Ventures, a Washington DC real estate development company. BNY MELLON ASSET MANAGEMENT
The global asset management arm of The Bank of New York Mellon Corp said it appointed Thomas Connolly as managing director, head of asset management for the Middle East region. Connolly joins from the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.
 

 

Job Bank – Nov.3

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The following financial services industry appointments were announced on November 3, linked where possible to personal profiles on LinkedIn. To inform us of other job changes, please email moves@thomsonreuters.com. NEEDHAM & CO
The investment bank said Jim Apostolides has joined the firm as a managing director in the mergers and acquisitions group based in New York. He reports to Rick deNey. Most recently, Apostolides was a managing director at Citigroup Inc.   STANDARD LIFE INVESTMENTS
The global fund manager named Virginia Holmes as a nonexecutive director. Holmes was previously chief executive of AXA Investment Managers in the United Kingdom.   UBS AG  The Swiss investment bank named former Lehman Brothers banker Jeff Ren as an executive director for its China investment banking team, according to an internal memo obtained by Reuters on Monday.   PENSION CORP
The provider and underwriter of pension solutions named Louise Inward as its general counsel. Inward was formerly head of pensions practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers Legal.   GLOBAL PAYMENTS INC
The online credit card transactions processor promoted James Kelly to president and chief operating officer and also named David Mangum as chief financial officer. Joseph Hyde, currently chief financial officer, has been named to the position of president for its international division.
 

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