Merrill Lynch cuts global workforce

Investment
bank Merrill Lynch has sent e-mails to all of its 65,000 staff asking them to
consider taking voluntary redundancy.

The
investment bank, which has staff in 44 countries, has asked all employees from
secretaries to analysts and brokers to consider the offer.

The
US company is offering 12 to 54 weeks’ salary, depending on length of service,
and staff have been given a few weeks to decide.

Merrill
Lynch’s third-quarter results revealed that its year-to-date operating earnings
were $1.9bn, 35 per cent lower than the first nine months of 2000.

It
employs around 8,000 staff in the UK and the City of London is its headquarters
for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

A
company spokesman said, "We are reviewing all areas of business to ensure
they are sized properly for the market opportunity at the moment. The market
condition is a major factor of that."

The
company would not comment on how many positions it is hoping to lose.

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