Charlie Stenger, a currency-broker-turned-recruiter, has seen it all. One fired trader wept in his office. Another admitted he hadn’t told his wife he was unemployed, and left the house every day in a suit to sneak off to a coffee shop.
Then there are the delusional guys, who carefully explain how they’re not interested in jobs that don’t pay as well as those they just lost.
Bloomberg News reports that Stenger, who was laid off from ICAP in 2013 and now works for Sheffield Haworth, tells the men and women he counsels: Take the pay cut. Oh, and don’t wait for the phone to ring.
'This is crunch time - it’s not looking good', Stenger said. 'This is a shrinking pond'.
The investment banking business has shed tens of thousands of positions since the end of the financial crisis, and the downsizing has been hard on foreign-exchange desks at many banks, including Morgan Stanley, Barclays and Societe Generale. The industrywide job-axing sweep coincided with a shift to automation, which slashed staffing needs and spawned a new, and small, generation of quantitative traders whose decisions are driven by mathematical models.
There were 2,300 people working in currency-market front-office jobs at the world’s biggest banks in 2014, a 23% drop from four years earlier, according to Coalition Development, an analytics firm.
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