Dozens of New Zealand financial services roles are heading across the Tasman to Australia following the closure of two global bank-owned NZ operations in the space of a fortnight.
In total almost 50 NZ jobs were at threat after Deutsche Bank shut its NZ arm last week, barely days after Goldman Sachs announced it would wind up its Auckland-headquartered securities trading unit.
Both Goldman Sachs and Deutsche have since indicated some Auckland-based employees could be offered jobs in their respective Sydney offices that would take over the former NZ duties.
A Deutsche spokesperson said the bank had “always run an integrated Australia and New Zealand business with many New Zealand clients today already serviced from Australia”
“The decision to consolidate our fixed income trading activities into Australia aligns with Deutsche Bank’s global ambitions to simplify its business operations while recognising that we can conduct New Zealand trading activities from Sydney,” the spokesperson said.
Deutsche’s decision to dump its 29-strong NZ banking business was part was part of a global axe-wielding exercise that saw 35,000 jobs cut as the German-based financial services giant exited 10 jurisdictions.
According to the group’s latest accounts, Deutsche NZ reported a $6 million profit over the 2014 calendar year.
Despite the closure, Deutsche would retain exposure to New Zealand via its 49.9 per cent stake in stockbroking and advisory business Craigs Investment Partners and that firm’s wholly-owned investment banking subsidiary, Deutsche Craigs.
Likewise, Goldman Sachs, which cut 20 positions after shuttering its NZ securities trading arm two weeks ago, would keep a local connection. As well as maintaining its NZ investment banking business as a stand-alone unit, the group would keep its 19.9 per cent holding in wealth management firm JB Were, a spokesperson for Goldman Sachs said.
BNZ-parent, the National Australia Bank, owns the remaining 80.1 per cent of JB Were.
“There will be no change to our JB Were holding,” the Goldman Sachs spokesperson said.
She said many Goldman Sachs employees affected by the trading unit shutdown would probably be offered positions in Australia.
As well as NZ, Deutsche said it was evacuating Argentina, Chile, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Mexico, Norway, Peru and Uruguay in an effort to stem a 6 billion euro loss in the September quarter.
At the same time, the German giant announced a range of reforms including a shake-up of its asset management business. Under the ‘Strategy 2020’ banner, Deutsche said it would build “an innovative offering for retirement and Strategic Beta products” as well as ramping up its alternatives and multi-asset capabilities.
Deutsche would also focus on pension products, developing sustainable/impact investing into a “mainstream asset class”, and look to “fully automate investment processes across front and back offices”.
– David Chaplin, Investment News NZ
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