Goldman Sachs Group is planning to lay off between 5 to 10 percent of its fixed-income traders and salespersons later this quarter, the Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter. The reduction in the bank’s workforce, which would be steeper than its usual 5 percent annual cut, is expected to impact up to 250 people, the Journal reported.
The job cuts would reportedly be made in the bank’s debt, currencies and commodities divisions — areas that have been impacted by investors’ concerns over global economic growth and dropping commodity prices. Additionally, the onset of new regulations, which require the country’s largest banks to hold extra capital in order to withstand another financial crisis, has also forced several lenders to shrink their fixed-income trading businesses in recent months.
Last month, Goldman’s rival Morgan Stanley moved to cut 1,200 jobs, including nearly 25 percent of its debt traders and salespeople, underscoring a slump in debt-trading revenue that is likely to extend well into 2016.
According to the Wall Street Journal, which cited analysts at Barclays Bank, Goldman, which is scheduled to release its fourth-quarter results next week, is likely to report fixed-income trading revenue of $1.1 billion — down 5 percent from a year ago. And, full-year revenue is expected to drop 14 percent.
“I’m going to rely on Goldman management to know the difference between fat, and muscle and bone,” Glenn Schorr, an analyst with Evercore ISI, told the Journal. “It’s a very difficult balancing act.”