Bank of East Asia to shut all 22 brokerage outlets in Hong Kong to cut costs

Pedestrians walk past a Bank of East Asia branch in Hong Kong on February 15.
Pedestrians walk past a Bank of East Asia branch in Hong Kong on February 15.PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

HONG KONG (BLOOMBERG) - Bank of East Asia, the largest family-run bank listed in Hong Kong, has embarked on a cost-cutting effort that will see the lender close branches of its securities unit and shed about 180 jobs.

The bank will shut all of East Asia Securities Co's 22 retail outlets in Hong Kong by July 8, BEA said in an e-mailed statement on Thursday (June 2).

Following a review of its businesses, the lender will seek to streamline its operations through various means including automation, it said.

The resulting job cuts account for 3.8 per cent of the bank's total headcount in Hong Kong, BEA said. The securities unit will continue to provide service to customers through telephone and electronic channels, it said.