National Australia Bank Cuts 6000 Jobs

Jon Howard
November 3, 2017

According to chief executive Andrew Thorburn, who announced the job cuts on Thursday, the banking industry is under pressure to reshape its workforce and "as transactions move to digital channels, and this is driven by our customers, we will need fewer people".

The announcement comes as the bank posted a cash profit of $6.6 billion for the 2017 full year, a small increase compared with 2016's $6.5 billion.

It flagged restructuring charges of A$500 million to A$800 million in the first half of fiscal 2018, and a spike in expenses of 5 percent to 8 percent over the year.

Heavyweight Rio Tinto Ltd closed at an over six-year high, while its rival, BHP Billiton Ltd closed at a 7-week high.

"Having said that, we're hiring 2,000 people with different capabilities: data scientists, AI, robotics, automation, technology people, digital people, so the net will be 4,000 and that's just a reshaping that's going to happen".

"Detail is light on how the bank has determined that 6,000 jobs are to be cut, and where and when", Angrisano said in a statement.

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The result was in line with analyst expectations and NAB held its final dividend flat at 99 cents, fully franked.

NAB's net profit of $5.3 billion saw a large rebound from 2016's $352 million, which was affected by the sale of its ill-fated United Kingdom banking business in January 2016.

"Some of our people will leave the bank, and we are announcing a new program, The Bridge, to support them", he said.

'We've come from a position of strength and now we look out three-to-five years and we want to lay out that plan, ' he said.

NAB declared a final dividend of A$0.99 per share, the same as past year.

Like the country's other major banks, NAB has moved to tighten its focus on its core franchises in Australia and New Zealand and shed capital-intensive operations to tackle a sluggish revenue environment and more recent signs a booming property market has begun to cool in big cities including Sydney.

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