Bank of East Asia to cut 180 jobs in HK
HONG KONG • Hong Kong lender Bank of East Asia (BEA) said yesterday that it is cutting 180 jobs in the city, accounting for about 3.8 per cent of its workforce there, as volumes of equities traded on the Hong Kong exchange slump.
One of Hong Kong's last remaining family-run lenders said it was shutting all 22 retail branches of subsidiary East Asia Securities Company by July 8. But it will continue to serve clients via telephone banking services and other electronic channels.
BEA shares jumped 2.3 per cent before giving up some of the gains to trade up 0.4 per cent after the news, while the Hang Seng Index was flat.
Several other global banks, including Barclays and Standard Chartered, have in recent months cut jobs in research, sales and trading across Asia.
S. Korea sees 0.5% economic growth in Q1
SEOUL • South Korea's economy grew just 0.5 per cent in the first quarter, the Bank of Korea said yesterday - a shade higher than originally estimated but weighed down by an extended export slump.
The revised on-quarter growth figure for the January to March period was slightly up on the central bank's earlier estimate of 0.4 per cent, but still down from 0.7 per cent in the final quarter of last year. Asia's fourth-largest economy is currently struggling with growing jobless woes, mounting consumer debt and falling exports in the face of slowing global demand.