Goldman Sachs could cut as much as eight percent of its staff as the investment bank eyes a slowing economy

New York (AFP) - Goldman Sachs could cut up to eight percent of its staff, or around 4,000 jobs, according to reports Friday, as the financial giant eyes sluggish global growth in 2023.

The job cuts are expected early in 2023, according to reports in Semafor and CNBC that said the final figure could ultimately be smaller than eight percent.

Goldman Sachs typically trims about one to five percent of headcount each year, targeting underperforming staff.

This year’s culling will be deeper than usual in light of the uncertain economic outlook and the growth in Goldman’s staffing in recent years, a person familiar with the matter told AFP.

Goldman’s staff stood at 49,100 at the end of October, up nearly 30 percent from the end of 2019 after hiring campaigns and acquisitions.

The move comes as Goldman Sachs and other investment banks have seen a big drop in fees tied to initial public offerings and described a cloudy outlook for merger and acquisition advising in 2023 due to economic uncertainty.

At a financial conference last week, Goldman Chief Executive David Solomon said capital markets activity had also been weaker than expected, with clients “taking risk down” after a volatile year.

“At the same time, we continue to see headwinds on our expense lines, especially in the near term,” Solomon said. “Ultimately, we will remain nimble and we will size the firm to reflect the opportunity set that we see in front of us.”