(Bloomberg) -- Deutsche Bank AG is preparing further job cuts to keep costs in check, with the focus likely to be areas outside the trading unit.
Meeting expense targets in an inflationary environment will require a redoubling of savings efforts, including job cuts, Chief Executive Officer Christian Sewing said at an earnings press conference on Thursday. He singled out the lender’s consumer banking activities in Germany as one area where cuts would take place.
The investment bank — a key earnings driver in recent years - won’t be heavily affected, people familiar with the matter said. The trading unit is more likely to add staff on balance, while any cuts among teams advising on deals and capital underwriting will be limited since Deutsche Bank hired fewer people than rivals during the 2021 boom, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing private information.
Deutsche Bank said on Thursday that it’s seeking to keep costs steady at least year’s level, despite high inflation and expected growth in revenue. Non-interest expenses fell 5% in 2022, even as employee numbers increased.
The new focus on job cuts comes after the end of a restructuring program, launched in 2019, that initially aimed to eliminate 18,000 roles and ended up only seeing about 8,000 positions disappear. Deutsche Bank has said it deliberately missed the reduction target partly to keep up with revenue growth that was far above expectations.
Staff reductions in Germany will partly take place on the back of Deutsche Bank’s ongoing efforts to cut the number of retail branches. The bank plans to close a significant amount this year, though the number will likely remain under the level of 173 branches the lender closed globally last year, Chief Financial Officer James von Moltke said on a call with analysts.
(Updates with CFO comments on branch closures in final paragraph)
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