A commuter pedestrian wearing a face mask or covering due to the COVID-19 pandemic, sits inside a bus shelter by a branch of a Barclays bank in central London on July 29, 2020. – British bank Barclays said Wednesday that first-half net profits tumbled by two thirds, as it set aside £3.7 billion ($4.7 billion, 4.0 billion euros) to deal with coronavirus fallout, and warned over a possible second wave. Profit after taxation dived to £695 million in the six months to the end of June, compared with £2.07 billion in the same portion of 2019, Barclays said in a results statement. (Photo by Tolga AKMEN / AFP) (Photo by TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images)
BARCLAYS is to cut 900 jobs in its UK business, trade union Unite said Tuesday (28), branding the bank’s move as “disgraceful” in the run-up to Christmas.
The union said the cuts are mostly in back-office jobs such as compliance, finance, legal, policy, IT and risk.
Barclays said it was restructuring “to simplify and reshape the business, improve service, and deliver higher returns,” but would not confirm numbers.
“This includes changes to our headcount as management layers are reduced and the group improves its technology and automation capabilities,” a spokesperson said.
“We are committed to supporting impacted colleagues through these changes.”
The move comes as British banks, including Barclays, close high-street branches as more customers move online and payments go increasingly cashless.
Consumer groups have warned that the closures hit those who predominantly still use cash, particularly the elderly.
Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Barclays is disgracefully cutting jobs to further boost its massive profits.”
“This is a mega-rich bank that is already on course to make eye-watering profits this year.”
Barclays flagged last month that more cutbacks were on the cards, as it unveiled a 16-per cent drop in net profit for the third quarter.
Profit after tax slid to £1.3 billion from June to September, down from £1.5 bn in the same period the previous year.
Pretax profit dipped four per cent to £1.9 bn but revenues climbed five per cent to £6.3 bn on higher interest rates.