07 December 2006

RBC CM Cuts 41 Jobs in US Fixed-Income Sales

Bloomberg, Elizabeth Stanton, 7 December 2006

RBC Capital Markets, the investment- banking arm of Canada's biggest lender, eliminated 41 bond sales jobs this week from offices in seven U.S. cities as part of a plan to add specialization in the U.S. fixed income business.

The people let go in New York, Chicago, New Jersey, Florida, Tennessee and Oregon were part of the firm's so-called middle market group that sells to institutional customers, spokesman Kevin Foster said today. Most had worked for Dain Rauscher, a Minneapolis-based brokerage Royal Bank of Canada acquired in 2001, he said.

RBC is ``in no way reducing its commitment to the U.S. or the middle-market business,'' Foster said. ``The goal is to align our operations in the U.S. the way we have them set up in other regions.''

The firm this year hired 140 people in U.S. fixed income, said Foster, who is based in New York. He declined to provide more details on the positions being eliminated. RBC Capital Markets employs about 1,200 people globally in bonds.

Royal Bank of Canada last week said profit rose for an eighth straight quarter to a record as trading revenue more than doubled and investment banking fees surged.

Shares of Toronto-based Royal Bank of Canada rose 33 cents to C$54.50 ($47.43) in Toronto Stock Exchange composite trading. They've risen 23 percent in the past year.

HSBC Holdings Plc, Europe's biggest bank by market value, cut about 20 positions in its bond group in New York this week after the firm reported a drop in trading revenue, said two people with knowledge of the firings.