Citizens Bank to lay off 125 in Bridg...

Citizens Bank to lay off 125 in Bridgeport

Posted in the Trumbull Forum


Bridgeport, CT

#1 Jun 2, 2014
Citizens Bank plans to lay off an estimated 125 employees in Bridgeport, the company told the state Department of Labor.

Citizens spokeswoman Angelyn Masiello said the layoffs are expected to commence Aug. 1 at the 1000 Lafayette Boulevard office and will be finished by Oct. 24.

"These layoffs will exceed six months and are expected to be permanent," Masiello said in a letter to the department. "Bumping rights (the ability to displace lesser senior employees) are not available or applicable."

Affected employees are being offered assistance, including a severance package, and outplacement and career assistance. They also will be considered for open positions, according to the letter, which was dated March 29.

"As part of an effort to manage costs and improve efficiency, we are eliminating some positions in our Bridgeport office," bank spokeswoman Lauren DiGeronimo said Monday, adding that the bank is working with impacted staff to provide severance benefits and outplacement and career assistance.

The action follows an announcement in February by Royal Bank of Scotland, Citizens Bank's parent, that it planned to reduce its investment banking and international operations, leading to the loss of 30,000 jobs. Some will be in its U.S. mortgage trading businesses over the next 12 to 18 months. RBS has about 2,000 employees in Stamford at its U.S. headquarters.

Citizens Bank was a strong unit of RBS but was hit hard by the recession and banking panic, said John Carusone, president of the Bank Analysis Center in Hartford.

"In 2013, it posted nearly a $3 billion loss due to unprofitable operations and a writedown of goodwill which it acquired from dozens of acquisitions during the last 15 years," he said. "Management and the British government have determined that the continued existence of Citizens as an RBS subsidiary is no longer strategically viable. Since no buyers have stepped forward with compelling offers, RBS has decided to spin Citizens off as a new entity to a group of investors."

When this occurs, he said, layoffs often result.

Companies often ask the state DOL to dispatch its Rapid Response team to assist impacted employees, said department spokeswoman Nancy Steffens.

"I know the unit will be reaching out to the company to offer workforce and re-employment assistance," she said.

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