Wells Fargo Cuts Dozens of Fixed-Income Research Analysts

Wells Fargo & Co. cut dozens of fixed-income analysts and is scaling back how it distributes research to clients, part of a push to simplify operations and lower headcount, according to people familiar with the matter.

Affected teams include those devoted to high-yield and investment-grade bond research as well as structured credit, the people said, asking not to be identified because the job cuts aren’t public.

The fixed-income research department will shift from a publishing platform, which provides analysis on securities and market trends to a broad range of clients, to a desk analyst and strategy model, according to spokeswoman Hannah Sloane. Desk analysts typically work directly with traders and salespeople, providing research for internal trading decisions that’s distributed to a smaller client base.

“We regularly review and evaluate the needs of our clients to align our resources accordingly,” Sloane said Tuesday in a statement. “We continue to offer our clients fixed-income expertise and best-in-class product education, portfolio analysis, market intelligence, market commentary and investment analysis through our fixed-income market and portfolio-strategy group.”

Sloane declined to comment on the job cuts.

Research units across Wall Street have come under pressure in recent years as banks have sought to cut expenses and felt the broad impact of European restrictions that require firms to unbundle research costs from trade execution.

Chief Executive Officer Charles Scharf, who took over last October, has embarked on a job-cutting initiative as part of a wider effort to slash expenses. The firm -- the U.S. banking industry’s largest employer, with 274,900 employees at the end of September -- became the first major U.S. lender to resume job cuts after a number of banks said they would try to offer workers stability during the pandemic.

San Francisco-based Wells Fargo is under heightened pressure to reduce costs after slashing its dividend earlier this year.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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