Deutsche Bank promises bonuses as it lets go of MDs promoted in March

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No one is safe at Deutsche Bank. Not even the people who were promoted to managing director only three months ago. With CEO Christian Sewing promising to, "significantly slim down," Deutsche's ranks of directors and managing directors, recent promotion at Deutsche Bank may even be a leading indicator of redundancy risk. If it likes you, however, Deutsche will do its best to keep you onside.

As Deutsche Bank seeks cut €1bn in costs from the corporate and investment bank by the end of 2019, it is pulling out of entire sectors. In the process, we understand that the bank has put at risk several of the MDs it promoted in London this year.

Deutsche Bank declined comment on the exits, which come as the bank retrenches its corporate finance business back to what it describes as, 'global industries closely aligned with the strengths of the German and European economy.' In pursuit of this, the German bank has also pulled out of oil and gas and merged various corporate finance sector teams, and is understood to be predominantly focused on areas aligned to German industrials. Teams that don't fit with the new blueprint are being cut, irrespective of their performance.

Yesterday, Deutsche Bank announced that Alasdair Warren, its EMEA head of corporate finance is leaving as part of the cuts. Today, Deutsche CFO James Von Moltke, made a presentation at the Goldman Sachs European Financial Services Conference in which he sought to reassure people that the corporate and investment bank will, "always be the core DNA of Deutsche Bank and will always have at least half of the revenues," even as senior staff are made redundant.

For anyone at DB wondering where the cuts will fall in the months to come, Von Moltke's presentation included the helpful chart below. You don't want to be in the, 'reduce' area; you do want to be in 'grow'.

Following several voluntary exits from Deutsche Bank as staff flee for safety elsewhere, Von Moltke also said today that Deutsche Bank intends to maintain individual bonuses at last year's high level and to pay retention premiums.  It's not clear whether the latter refers to new retention payments or to the retention bonuses paid in 2017 by John Cryan.  - These only pay out if Deutsche's share price hits €23 in early 2021. Right now, DB shares are trading at €9.56... A reduction in the strike price of the previous bonuses would be good news for their recipients. It may, however, be wishful thinking.

Deutsche Bank strategy chart

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