The official line out of ANZ at the moment is that it’s conducting an internal review of its securities trading processes and practices, following its involvement in the Opes Prime shares debacle.
Unofficially, the bank is known to be wielding the axe internally as it looks to restructure some of its operations and clean out non-performing staff.
ANZ Bank’s head of corporate affairs, Paul Edwards, confirmed that four ANZ employees had been suspended as a result of Opes Prime, three from the securities lending team and one from a related area.
But Edwards said the bank had not shut its securities lending operations. “What we’ve said is that we will continue to support our existing clients in the sector but we won’t be looking for new business.”
A senior Melbourne-based recruiter, who has ongoing dealings with ANZ, says he expects a wave of sackings from the bank, but that it will also need to make external hires.
“Even though they’ve taken a bit of a hit with regards to Opes Prime, Tricom, Centro and others – the vibe out there is that ANZ’s risk management structure should probably have been a bit cleaner and more thorough – they’re still one of those banks with a good growth plan moving forward,” he said.
“Sometimes when a bank is at its weakest, that’s when people want to join the firm as well because they know they can make a difference. There’s a major internal review process going on and it’s a great opportunity to clean out all of the dead wood. People are going to be asked to leave ANZ.”