Great news at SocGen! Following swiftly in the footsteps of BNP Paribas, the second largest French bank this morning announced plans to cut costs by an additional €500m in its corporate and investment bank. Fixed income traders who are expected to be at the forefront of the resulting job losses are surely over the moon. Losing your job at SocGen usually comes with a serious upside.
While banks like Deutsche have been cutting severance pay to the bare minimum (one to 1.5 week's pay for every year of service in London), SocGen has a well-deserved relationship for being inordinately generous to the staff it's letting go.
This benevolence dates back to 2012, when the French bank first flashed its packages of €30k to €290k for employees who left of their own accords (with €25k extra for anyone who set up their own company instead of working for a competitor). It was so successful that 2,200 SocGen staff put themselves forward - far in excess of the 850 the bank was aiming for. Nonetheless, SocGen repeated its offer in 2013 and then again in 2015 and 2016. Although SocGen didn't respond to a comment on the severance packages it will be paying in 2019, it seems fair to presume that traders who leave will be well looked after.
In the current environment, SocGen's traders may also be able to walk into new jobs elsewhere. Bank of America Merrill Lynch, HSBC are all building out trading capabilities in Paris as a result of Brexit and will likely be interested to hear from talented traders who are located in the French capital already.
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