Wells Fargo to Cut Jobs Across Most Units

October 9, 2020

Wells Fargo plans to cut jobs across most of its business lines and thousands of jobs could be impacted, with hundreds already cut in commercial banking, according to news reports.

The company has eliminated more than 700 commercial-banking positions across the entire division already, people with knowledge of the matter tell Bloomberg, adding that tens of thousands of jobs could be affected eventually.

Wells Fargo spokesperson Katie Ellis confirms to the news service that “some reductions” have already taken place.

“We are at the beginning of a multiyear effort to build a stronger, more efficient company for our customers, employees, communities and shareholders,” Ellis tells Bloomberg in a statement. “As part of this work, we will have impacts, including job reductions, in nearly all of our functions and business lines, including commercial banking, where we have started displacements.”

Ellis says that Wells Fargo hasn’t set final targets for the reductions yet, but that the company plans “to reduce the size of our workforce through a combination of attrition, the elimination of open roles and job displacements,” according to the news service. 

In March, Wells Fargo and Morgan Stanley said their employees could rest assured that they would keep their jobs for the time being, as a moratorium on layoffs put in place in light of the economic hardship caused by the Covid-19 pandemic then getting under way. Wells Fargo said it would suspend new layoffs and pause “initiating new displacements.” Citi said it would refrain at least temporarily from layoffs, and Bank of America’s CEO Brian Moynihan told CNBC that there would be no layoffs at the company in 2020.

In September, however, Wells Fargo and Citi both returned to laying off staff. Outgoing Wells Fargo chief financial officer John Shrewsberry said during a virtual Q&A session at the 2020 Barclays Global Financial Services Conference that the company’s $10 billion cost-reduction plan, announced in July, would likely include substantial reduction of the company’s workforce.

“Most of the costs … are people and so that’s likely where a lot of this will be born out,” he said, American Banker reported at the time.

Do you have a news tip you’d like to share with FA-IQ? Email us at editorial@financialadvisoriq.com

By Alex Padalka
  • To read the Bloomberg article cited in this story, click here if you have a paid subscription.