Citigroup cuts hundreds of jobs, investment banking and mortgage units

NEW YORK – Citigroup is cutting hundreds of jobs across the company, with the Wall Street giant’s investment banking division among those affected.

The cuts amount to less than 1 per cent of Citigroup’s 240,000-person workforce, according to people familiar with the matte. Staffers across the firm’s operations and technology organisation and US mortgage-underwriting arm are also among those affected.

The routine cuts are part of Citigroup’s normal business planning, the people said. There’s been no broad mandate for managers to cut staffers; instead, various divisions have been grappling with different reasons for the cuts.

A spokesman for Citigroup declined to comment.

The move comes just weeks after rival JPMorgan Chase & Co. cut hundreds of mortgage employees. Goldman Sachs, for its part, embarked on one of its biggest rounds of job cuts ever in January when it planned to eliminate thousands of positions across the company.

In the technology division, Citigroup has spent billions in recent years upgrading its underlying infrastructure. Chief executive officer Jane Fraser has long said those investments would ultimately allow the bank to reduce its reliance on manual processes.

“As our investment in transformation and control initiatives mature, we expect to realize efficiency as those programs transition from manually intensive processes to technology-enabled ones,” Ms Fraser said in January.

In investment banking, on the other hand, the firm is grappling with an industrywide slowdown in deals. The dearth of activity sparked a 53 per cent drop in revenue from the business last year and analysts are expecting additional declines in the first quarter.

Citigroup’s recent moves in its mortgage division come after the bank already dismissed dozens of staffers last year. Mortgage demand has dropped in recent months amid rising prices and a rapid increase in mortgage rates.

“We’re actively hiring to execute against our strategy, but we’re also re-pacing where that makes sense in light of the environment that we’re in,” chief financial officer Mark Mason said in January. “We’re constantly combing talent and making sure we’ve got the right people in the right roles, and, where necessary to restructure, we do that as well.”

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