10 Oct, 2013 @ 11:49
1 min read

Jobs gloom for Catalunya bankers

Business Catalunya Caixa

CATALUNYA CAIXA is to slash its workforce by a third as it looks to shrink its balance sheet and restructure its operations.

The nationalised lender reached an agreement with unions on Wednesday which will see 2,153 of its 7,200 employees made redundant, and the salaries of the remaining staff cut.

In a statement the bank said it would also offer voluntary redundancy to its seasonal employees, and reduce the working hours of those on flexible contracts in a bid to further cut its outgoings.

Those being laid off will receive a redundancy package equal to one months pay for each year they have worked.

The decision is expected to be approved by the management committee in the next week.

The move comes as the troubled bank seeks to improve its appeal to buyers, and is part of a deal it made with the EU following a €12 billion bail out last year.

Catalunya Caixa was formed in 2010 from the fusion of three savings banks in the northeastern Catalonia region, and is the second-biggest of the four banks that have been nationalised by the Spanish government to save them from collapse.

Last month another bailed out bank, Bankia, announced it was to axe 800 external directors as part of its own cost reduction efforts.

Claire Wilson

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    • Economic forecasts imply the economy will see marginal growth by the end of the year, and while recovery will remain fragile there are definite signs of green shoots.

      Unfortunately, this doesn´t mean the end of “bad” news stories like this. The country still has a long way to go and we will see further cuts, redundancies etc as banks, businesses and the government do what they can to lift themselves out of difficulty.

      The action taken by Catalunya is part of the deal it struck with the EU last year and something which, while painful now, will over the longer term improve the business and enable it to return to health. Although this story isn´t good news for the people made redundant, I´d argue it´s good news for the economy as it shows the bank is taking its responsibilities seriously and making steps towards a return to health.

      Let´s consider a similar situation in the UK. Lloyds Bank was also bailed out by the government, but following staff cuts, a tightening of its its balance sheet and an organisational restructure, its share price rose to a level at which it has become profitable for the UK government to start selling its stake back to the private sector.

      Hopefully in a year or two I will be penning a similar story about Catalunya´s return to private hands.

  1. When your economy is a trilion euros in repayment debt, there isn’t a “recovery” in sight. Sure, some indicators rise and some fall, but the big picture is the real indicator.

  2. Charlie, seriously, your acting as if your an authority on what’s going on with regards to Spain’s economy whilst you’re penning articles for the Olive Press. You must consider us lot to be real muppets.
    I consider it arrogance to even suggest that anyone is an ‘expert’ on the direction of an economy when it is made up of trillions of random decisions. Impossible to predict but you will be right 50% of the time as will everybody else.
    The same goes for ‘property experts’ who pretend (again with arrogance) that their opinion is of superior value. Nothing more that Gypsy fortune tellers selling hope to dreamers. If your opinion was worth any value you would not be writing two bit articles on this site.

  3. The doubling in pour people, a record debt, mass job cuts…
    yep clear signs of a strong recovery…..
    The more the politicians lie, the more they show absolute incapacity of doing their job….and they don”t care…they just want money, and then out.

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