• The French bank Societe Generale is announcing major job cuts with 1,600 staff set to be laid off.
  • The majority of the cuts, 750 staff, come from the bank’s operations in France, according to the union which represents the bank’s employees.
  • Employees in London and New York are also set to depart as part of the bank’s plans to cut €500 million ($563 million) in costs which it announced in February following poor results in its trading unit, according to Reuters.

The French lender Societe Generale is set to cut 7.5% of its global headcount as part of a cost-cutting move designed to shore up profits at the bank.

Some 1,600 jobs are set to go globally with the bulk of the cuts coming in the bank’s French operations, where 750 employees are set to depart on a voluntary basis, according to the bank’s trade union website.

Societe Generale’s investment bank will be the hardest hit with 1,200 jobs set to go following a poor performance in its trading unit, reported by the Financial Times. Operations in London and New York will also see job losses following an announcement in February that it would cut €500 million ($563 million) in costs, as reported by Reuters.

Similar to the Japanese lender Nomura, who last week announced job cuts, Societe Generale will cut out staff from its flow-trading operation. The lender also announced plans to close its over-the-counter commodities business and its proprietary-trading subsidiary as part of its plans to boost profits.

The bank's trading performance plunged by 50% in the fourth quarter of last year amid a difficult environment which forced CEO Frédéric Oudéa to cut the lender's profitability forecasts.

"In France, these job reductions would be made in accordance with the new employment agreement signed with all employee representatives, through internal mobility and natural departure and, in some perimeters, through a voluntary departure plan." Societe Generale said in a statement. "Internationally, these job reductions would be done in accordance with local regulations and practices."

The bank, which has a global headcount of around 20,000, expects the job cuts in France to be finalized by the third quarter of this year.