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Bank of America Said Planning to Boost Australian Equity Staff

Written by Anton Murray Consulting on . Posted in Investment Banking News, News

Brett Foley, Adam Haigh

Bank of America Corp. plans to add about four positions in its Australian equities operations this year as rivals exit the market, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The hires, following cuts several years ago, will include equity sales and trading as well as research staff, one of the people said, asking not to be identified as the details are private.

Bank of America, which ranked sixth last year for Australian equity trading value, is hiring in the division as Nomura Holdings Inc. and CIMB Group Holdings Bhd. cut workers in the Asia-Pacific region. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index this month climbed to the highest level since 2008 as record low interest rates boost the allure of stocks.

The Charlotte, North Carolina-based lender named Peter Phillips this month as its new Australian equities head, according to a March 4 internal memo obtained by Bloomberg. Phillips, who joined the firm in 2010 from Goldman Sachs Group Inc., is replacing Ryan Holsheimer, who left Bank of America to join JPMorgan Chase & Co. in Hong Kong.

Lucinda Horne, a spokeswoman for Bank of America, confirmed the contents of the memo. She declined to comment on the firm’s hiring plans or current headcount levels.

Deutsche Bank AG, UBS Group AG and Citigroup Inc. were the top three by value for Australian equity trading in 2014, followed by Morgan Stanley and Macquarie Group Ltd., Australia’s largest investment bank, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Malaysia’s CIMB said last month it would close its Australian offices and cut 103 positions. Nomura, Japan’s largest brokerage, cut about 12 Asia equities jobs to focus on more profitable operations, a person with knowledge of the matter said in January.

Bloomberg