Morgan Stanley to cut several hundred jobs in wealth unit

Morgan Stanley to cut several hundred jobs in wealth unit

Morgan Stanley to cut several hundred jobs in wealth unit

Morgan Stanley is planning to eliminate several hundred jobs, the first such move under CEO Ted Pick.

The cuts will affect less than 1 per cent of employees in the wealth-management business, which has about 40,000 workers and is the firm’s largest unit, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.

A representative for Morgan Stanley declined to comment.

Pick took the helm in January from James Gorman, who eliminated more than 3,000 jobs last year amid a renewed focus on expenses and a slump in fees from a deal making drought.

Ted Pick, CEO of Morgan Stanley, speaks during a Bloomberg Television interview on day three of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, on January 18, 2024. Photo: Bloomberg

The bank’s shares have been the worst-performing among its biggest US peers this year, down about 10 per cent. Last month, the company warned that it will take longer to achieve its profit-margin goals in the wealth unit and signalled that the below-target results will last a little while longer.

The division, which got a boost for much of last year from higher net interest income, could see that benefit start to fade if the Federal Reserve starts lowering interest rates later this year.

Net new assets in the unit remained under US$50 billion for a second straight quarter in the last three months of 2023. That pace is short of Morgan Stanley’s target of more than US$300 billion a year.

During his first quarterly earnings call with analysts last month, the new CEO said that the wealth segment is the engine of the firm and the bank has been committed to growing it. The unit pulled in 48 per cent of total revenue last year, compared with 42.2 per cent at the investment bank.

The Wall Street Journal reported the job cuts earlier Wednesday.

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