UBS Announces Planned Job Cuts

UBS, the largest Swiss bank, announced plans this week to cut about 3,500 jobs, or 5.3% of its workforce. 

Approximately 45% of the reductions will come from the investment bank, 35% from the wealth management and Swiss bank division, and 10% each from the asset management and wealth management Americas units. UBS had 65,707 employees at the end of June.

In a statement, UBS said it is aiming to reduce annual costs by 2 billion Swiss francs (about $2.5 billion U.S. dollars) by the end of 2013.

The company had announced about 18,500 job cuts during the credit crisis, which resulted in more than $58 billion of writedowns and credit losses for the bank and the biggest annual loss in Swiss corporate history in 2008, according to Bloomberg News.

“UBS will continue to be vigilant in managing its cost base while remaining committed to investing in growth areas,” the bank said in its statement.

Bloomberg noted that UBS had been aiming to double pretax profit to about 15 billion francs ($18.6 billion USD) by 2014 from 7.46 billion francs ($9.4 billion) in 2010. The bank abandoned the earnings goal on July 26 and said it will give an update on its targets in November.