Germany's Berenberg Is Laying Off at Least 50 People in Its Equities Business

(Bloomberg) -- Joh. Berenberg Gossler & Co., the German lender that’s among the oldest banks in the world, is cutting at least 50 jobs in its equities business, according to people with knowledge of the discussions.

The layoffs will impact sales and research, according to the people, who requested anonymity because the details aren’t public.

Berenberg is “re-setting equities headcount back to the beginning of 2017,” Karsten Wehmeier, a spokesman for the Hamburg-based firm, said in an e-mailed statement.

While revenue from trading equities has increased for the world’s biggest investment banks this year, the industry is in a period of flux brought on by the revised Markets in Financial Instruments Directive, or MiFID II. The sweeping set of European regulations forces firms to charge for stocks analysis that they previously provided for free and while some are wagering that they need to become bigger and better at this, others are scaling back.

Berenberg made “strong market share gains” in European cash equities and equity capital markets, Wehmeier said. The bank has equities operations in the U.K., Germany and the U.S.

Berenberg is considered to be the second-oldest bank in the world after Italy’s Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA. The firm, which is active in wealth and asset management, investment banking and corporate banking, employs around 1,600 people.

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