Morgan Stanley seeks to cut 7% of Asia-Investment Bank jobs

The decision is said to be influenced by strained relations with the US and a decline in economic growth


Morgan Stanley is contemplating a 7 per cent reduction in its investment banking workforce in the Asia-Pacific region. As per media sources, the decision is influenced by strained relations with the US and a decline in economic growth, which have dampened deal making activities.

As early as this week, the bank is expected to initiate discussions with affected bankers, potentially putting over 40 jobs at risk, including those within the capital markets unit. It’s not yet clear on the exact number of jobs cuts, but it’s being said that roles in China would be the most affected.

Previously, following a decline in deals, Morgan Stanley eliminated roughly 50 investment-banking positions in Asia by the end of 2022, with a considerable portion of them being China-focused roles. This reduction was one of the most substantial among Wall Street firms in the previous year, according to sources.

Global banks, previously optimistic about the prospects of the world’s second-largest economy, are now attempting to scale back their operations in China. Despite recognising the significant long-term opportunities, escalating tensions between the two largest economies have dampened sentiment and diminished the initial enthusiasm for China’s reopening.

Investors have reduced their investments in Chinese stocks, and US-based long-only fund managers have been actively selling Chinese shares. In April, it was reported that US President Joe Biden plans to sign an executive order within a few weeks, which will impose limitations on American businesses’ investments in key sectors of China’s economy.

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