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A bleak week on Wall Street: how will Aus be affected?

How will the Australian finance sector cope with the chaos as Lehman Brothers bites the dust and Merrill Lynch sells out to Bank of America?

It seem likely that Lehman’s 130-odd Australian staff will be looking for new jobs in the near future, but as rivals restrict their recruitment, is there anywhere left for laid-off Lehmanites to shelter? Traditional sanctuaries like London and New York are in even worse shape than Sydney.

Your chances of avoiding the axe at Merrill appear brighter. The i-bank has a larger presence in Australia than new owner BoA and there is only minimal overlap between the two businesses. These factors could help to keep jobs intact.

But that’s not to say there won’t be some bloodshed within the 500-strong Merrill workforce. The firm showed us earlier this year that it’s not afraid to slash staff.

And what of the wider ramifications for the banking jobs market? Are there more horrors on the horizon or is this the beginning of the end? Tell us your tales of doom below.

Comments (7)

  1. There simply won’t be any new investment banking jobs created in the near future. The local deal flow and the troubles at the US banks will see to this.

  2. We will see the ultimate effect only when the bad news stops coming out of New York. With AIG and Washington Mutual in dire straights, we just haven’t yet reached the bottom….more uncertainty and more job cuts are on the cards. Sorry to be so glum!

  3. I used to work for Lehman here in Australia, got the chop about 3 months ago and now in hind sight, its probably not such a bad outcome. Things are ugly out there and I don;t think its going to bounce in a hurry. The finance job market is going to be messy with Allco and BB also shedding.

  4. The latest news just adds fuel to the fire of Allco, Babcock, even Macquarie, it’s a bad environment for hiring

  5. Merrills safe – BA’s presence here in Aus is limited and if anything BA will want to grow its i-banking team here via Merrills

  6. I don’t think you can say any finances jobs are “safe”, its very hard to grow the ibank team when the deal flow is not there, and it is only a matter of time before its going to have an impact on head count. They have already demonstrated that they are not afraid to axe.

  7. Could be worse – at least time spent on the sidelines will be over summer working on the tan.

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