Wall Street giant Citigroup announced a major restructuring plan today that will result in the loss of 11,000 jobs worldwide. The "repositioning action," as they so eloquently put it, will reduce their total workforce by four percent, with most of the cuts coming in their Global Consumer Banking division. In other words, the bank just isn't doing that well overseas and it's looking to get out of some less profitable emerging markets. They said they plan to "sell or significantly scale back consumer operations in Pakistan, Paraguay, Romania, Turkey and Uruguay" and will close bank branches in Hong Kong, Korea, and Brazil. They also plan to close 44 branches in the United States.
The bank will write off $1 billion in earnings this quarter and another $100 million next year, but they say expect to save $1 billion a year starting in 2014.
The news comes just about six weeks after CEO Vikram Pandit was ousted by board members, who were frustrated with the company's growth. The company has remained profitable through the financial crisis of the last few years, but struggled to shake off the image of poster child of an organization that's too big to fail. (That 11,000 jobs is just four percent of the workforce gives you a sense of the scale they are working on.)
Citi's press release is also being roundly mocked for its excessive corporate jingoism, featuring direct "quotes" from Pandi's replacement, Michael Corbat, like, "These actions will result in increased business efficiency, streamlined operations and an optimized consumer footprint across geographies."