The mortgage mess has had Wall Street banks cutting jobs in the greatest numbers since the tech bust of 2001, according to Bloomberg. Over the past nine months, Wall Street firms have slashed more than 34,000 jobs. "So far, Citigroup has eliminated 1.7 percent of its workforce, while Lehman has chopped 18 percent. Morgan Stanley has cut 6.2 percent, and Merrill has eliminated 4.5 percent," Bloomberg reports.
"This crisis is much worse than 2001 and we don't know how long it's going to last," said Jo Bennett, a partner at executive search firm Battalia Winston International in New York. Job cuts "could be more than 100,000 in a few years."
The Bear Stearns payroll is also expected to be cut sharply when it is acquired by JPMorgan. As veterans head back out into a crowded financial jobs market, they may want to consider a career change.
But not necessarily. The CEO of an executive search firm told Reuters that some regional and boutique investment banks are seeing this as "an opportunity to hire talented people without having to buy them out of lucrative Wall Street jobs."