Bank of America Corp. plans to hire 350 people in its securities unit by mid-2002 as the third- biggest U.S. bank says it aims to bring in more talented bankers and traders from the ranks of those fired on Wall Street.
The Charlotte-based bank is making room for prospective hires by eliminating 600, or 7.5 percent, of the 8,000 jobs in its corporate and investment-banking unit.
Some of those who are being fired are investment bankers who Bank of America hired during the late 1990s, at the height of the investment-banking boom. Bank of America had to settle for lesser talent in some cases, because top bankers at rival firms wereearning big paychecks and bonuses and were so busy that few wanted to consider changing jobs, said Russ Gerson, a financial services executive recruiter for A.T. Kearney Inc.
“Clearly the quality of individual we are going to be able to attract who has been displaced by other firms is going to be higher than when we were trying to pull unwilling players out of these firms,” said Bill Hodges, head of debt capital markets for Bank of America.