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Wells Fargo laying off employees of securities unit

In the latest downsizing move by a big bank, Wells Fargo has started cutting jobs this week in its securities unit, including positions in Charlotte according to reporting by The Charlotte Observer.

The displaced employees include managing directors – high-level jobs that can draw seven figures in compensation, the sources said.

The Wells Fargo unit has become the biggest source of high-paying investment banking jobs in Charlotte, as Bank of America has shifted much of that activity to New York.

Wells Fargo Securities, which employs about 5,000 worldwide, offers Wall Street-style services to corporate clients, including merger advice and stock and bond offerings. Investment banks are known for cutting staff regularly, and turbulent financial markets have made the business more challenging entering 2016.

Wells Fargo on Wednesday said it eliminating positions in Charlotte and Fort Mill, as part of 581 layoffs nationwide. Wells and other banks have been trimming employees which they had bulked up during the financial crisis.

Wells Fargo Securities grew considerably in 2008 when San Francisco-based Wells bought Charlotte-based Wachovia, which had a larger investment banking and capital markets operation. The unit has its largest employee hub in Charlotte, with about 2,400 workers, and trading floors in uptown’s Duke Energy Center.

Overall, Wells Fargo had 264,700 total employees at year’s end, down 500 from the end of September. In the Charlotte area, it has more than 23,000 workers.