Thursday, August 16, 2007

We're Number One!

by Ken Houghton

Coutesy of my Loyal Reader, a piece from the Daily Mail on worker satisfaction in The City:
More than 80 per cent of Goldman employees were either happy or neutral about their jobs.

The firm that performed worst in the poll was troubled global investment bank Bear Stearns - more than 73 per cent of respondents who work at the firm said they were either dissatisfied or wished to leave.

It is notable that the Fixed Income side of the firm has been expanding significantly in London over the past eighteen months, including acquisition of a couple of mortgage-related firms.

The defence:
But Bear Stearns said: "We have a great record for employee retainment and feedback from our staff is generally very positive.

"We have a strong climate and are making a lot of top quality hires as we grow."

Of course, they said that about the recent acquistion of Encore Credit too. That's working out:
Bear Stearns gave 100 employees their walking papers yesterday, according to CNN Money. The cuts hit Bear’s subprime unit, Encore Credit. Headhunters say that more cuts are on the way thanks to the recent “meltdown” in financial markets....

With more to come?
Alan Johnson, managing director of Johnson Associates, a New York compensation consulting firm, expects layoffs in the mortgage and structured products divisions of the big banks before the end of the year.

There will be some good people available if that's true. But demand for those specific skills will probably be down.

UPDATE: BSRM takes a hit as well:
Encore Credit, based in Irvine, California, is eliminating 100 positions, and the Bear Stearns Residential Mortgage Corp. division in Scottsdale, Arizona, is reducing its workforce by 140, said the person, who declined to be identified because the number of jobs isn't being released publicly.

elicits the "non-defence":
"In the normal course of business Bear Stearns Residential Mortgage Corp. and Encore Credit evaluate market conditions and staffing levels in an effort to identify areas where we can eliminate redundancies and improve the efficiency of our operations," the New York-based firm said in an e-mailed statement today. "As a result we have made the decision to reduce our staffing levels and close two operation centers."

Encore was acquired late in 2006, with a significant number of their old staff electing severance instead of acquisition.

Can the EMC operations, centered in Dallas, be far behind?

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