Caixabank to cut 6,450 jobs in Spain's biggest banking staff overhaul -union By Reuters

Caixabank to cut 6,450 jobs in Spain's biggest banking staff overhaul -union By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: People walk past a Caixabank’s branch displaying a sign that reads “Office branch closed temporarily. This office will be closed throughout the day” during a one-day strike called by unions against the bank’s plans for layoffs in Madrid, Spai

By Jesús Aguado

MADRID (Reuters) – Caixabank has agreed with unions to lay off 6,452 employees in what will be the biggest ever staff overhaul in Spanish banking, even after the lender shaved 1,800 cuts from its initial plans, a union spokesperson said on Thursday.

The agreement to reduce its workforce in Spain by around 14.5% was reached after the bank met some of the union’s demands, such as implementing any job cuts through voluntary redundancies rather than compulsory cuts, the spokesperson for the Comisiones Obreras (CCOO) union said.

The deal was also made possible after improving financial compensation for those who leave the bank, he added.

Caixabank, which in March closed the acquisition of Bankia to become the country’s biggest domestic lender in terms of total assets, declined to comment.

The next month, Caixabank announced it was planning to cut 8,291 jobs, one of the largest such culls in Spain’s corporate history, and close 1,534 branches, slightly more than a quarter of its offices, to adapt to a customer shift towards online banking.

On Tuesday, a source with knowledge of the negotiations said that the lender would also reduce the number of branches affected to around 1,500.

The bank has around 5,550 branches and 44,400 staff in Spain.

The agreement with the union is a key aspect of the Bankia deal, which is underpinned by annual cost savings of 770 million euros ($916 million) by 2023..

So far, the lender has not given an estimate for the cost of the layoffs.

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