Robots could replace as many as half of Citigroup’s 20,000-strong technology and operations staff in the next five years.
Jamie Forese, the president of Citi and chief executive of the bank’s institutional clients groups told the Financial Times that the technology and operations, which accounts for almost 40% of the bank’s employees are the “most fertile for machine processing.”
In accordance with Fox Business, Forese isn’t the first bank executive to forecast mass job losses as a result of automation. Deutsche Bank chief John Cyran delivered a similar warning in 2017, essentially stating a “big number” of its workforce could be replaced by robots. He also stated, “we’ve got 20,000 operational roles. Over the next five years could you make it 10,000?”
Forese’s comments represents a more dramatic forecast of possible job losses than in the past. According to research from Financial Times, 60,000 jobs were replaced with robots at eight of the top ten investment banks between 2007 and 2017.
Similarly, a 2016 report from the World Economic Forum predicted that advances in automation will possibly lead to the loss of over 5 million jobs in 15 major developed and emerging economies by 2020.
Furthermore, a Barclays investment bank chief Tim Thorsby made comments regarding bank desk jobs, stating that anyone whose jobs involves “a lot of keyboard-hitting” is “less likely to have a happy future.”
HSBC, however, said it has almost finished replacing their workforce with technology.
Under immense pressure from investors to increase profits, but unable to grow revenue much, banks have increasingly turned to technology to reduce costs.