Barclays set to axe around 1,000 jobs

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The Independent Online

Banking giant Barclays is to move away from offering financial planning advice through its retail branches, likely to lead to around 1,000 job losses, it was announced today.

The bank said there had been a decline in the commercial viability of the services in recent years which it expected will continue.

Customers were increasingly buying and managing their investments online, said Barclays, adding it was proposing to offer retail investment services solely online.

"Barclays has been conducting a detailed review of its financial planning advice over recent months.

"This review has concluded that, given the changes to the retail investment market place, it is unlikely that this business would be able to deliver a return that would justify the investment required," the bank said in a statement.

Union leaders said the move will lead to 1,000 job losses.

Rob MacGregor, national officer of Unite, said: "Barclays management should hang their heads in shame as 1,000 hard-working staff are told they no longer have a job at the bank."

The bank's investment banking arm Barclays Capital is also cutting jobs, with around 200 staff being let go in London as part of a worldwide push to reduce costs.

"The move follows an industry-wide slowdown in investment banking revenues."

Rob MacGregor, of Unite, added: "Are the senior management of Barclays too busy counting their bonuses that they have totally lost touch with those who make their business successful?

"These highly trained workers will now face a bleak future along with the other 2.5 million unemployed in this country. This news once again confirms that contrary to what the Government claims the private sector will not fill the gap left by the slashing of jobs in our public services."

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