Royal Bank of Scotland is cutting 448 investment banking jobs in the UK, moving two-thirds of them to India.
The bank, 73% of which is owned by the taxpayer, said it would cut back- and middle-office roles in its investment bank, including a small number of technology jobs. Under its chief executive, Ross McEwan, RBS has been shrinking the division to focus on its personal and small business operations in the UK and Ireland.
About 300 jobs will go offshore, to an existing RBS operation based in Gurgaon, near Delhi, and Chennai in southern India. London and Newcastle-under-Lyme will bear the brunt of the cuts, along with Manchester. The layoffs will happen by the end of next year.
The move comes just days after RBS announced it would lay off 550 investment advisers, replacing them with an automated system that will offer advice based on customers responses to a series of questions. The bank, whichwas bailed out during the financial crisis, reported a £2bn loss for 2015, its eighth annual loss in a row.
John Morgan-Evans, regional officer of the Unite union, said: “Unite is disappointed that despite RBS’s promise to build a UK-focused bank, we continue to see jobs shipped out of the UK. It was inevitable that RBS’s talk of ‘technology simplification’ would come down to yet more job cuts as that remains the bank’s go-to solution whatever the problem.
“Once again placating shareholders with short-term savings is being prioritised over the long-term future of the bank and the employees who keep RBS running.”
The bank said: “As part of RBS’s drive to be a stronger, simpler and fairer bank, we have been restructuring our corporate & institutional bank, as well as reducing its size, to focus on our core customers and products.
“As this process continues our frontline staff need a simpler, clearer, more efficient relationship with our middle- and back-office functions to better serve customers, so we’re reshaping our services business accordingly. Unfortunately the changes will result in some job losses.”
RBS added that it would try to “redeploy staff into new roles wherever possible”.
This article was written by Julia Kollewe, for theguardian.com on Tuesday 15th March 2016 17.32 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010