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Swedbank plans more job cuts

Sweden's fourth largest bank, Swedbank Swedbank (formerly called F√∂reningsSparbanken) is a leading Nordic-Baltic banking group with 8.8 million retail customers and 441,000 corporate customers in Sweden, Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia. In Sweden, the group has more than 470 branches. , said Friday Friday: see Sabbath; week.

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 it would cut thousands of jobs in the Baltics and Ukraine, where it is heavily exposed to the economic crisis.

The announcement followed the bank's disclosure of another heavy loss in the second quarter.

"By the end of the second quarter of 2010 we expect to have 3,600 fewer employees compared with year-end 2008," the bank said in a statement.

During the first half of 2009 it cut its number of employees by 862, it said.

The job cuts, which affect 17 percent of Swedbank's workforce, will be concentrated mainly in the Baltic states Baltic states, the countries of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, bordering on the eastern coast of the Baltic Sea. Formed in 1918, they remained independent republics until their involuntary incorporation in 1940 into the USSR. They regained their independence in Sept.  and in international operations Internal Operations (I.O., IO or I/O) is a fictional American Intelligence Agency in Wildstorm comics. It was originally called International Operations. I.O. first appeared in WildC.A.T.S. volume 1 #1 (August, 1992) and was created by Brandon Choi and Jim Lee. , the bank said.

Swedbank in the second quarter suffered a larger-than-expected net loss of 2.0 billion kronor (180 million euros, 254 million dollars) against a profit of 3.35 billion kronor in the same period last year.

Analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswires Dow Jones Newswires is the real-time financial news organization owned by Dow Jones. Founded in 1882, its primary competitors are Bloomberg L.P. and Reuters. The company reports more than 420,000 subscribers -- including brokers, traders, analysts and fund managers -- as of July  had forecast a loss limited to 785 million kronor.

The bank's performance was hurt by the provision of nearly 6.7 billion kronor to cover risky credit, of which 4.0 billion was linked to operations in the Baltics and 2.0 billion in Ukraine.

"We expect impaired loans to increase in the second half (compared to the same period in 2008) but it will be less than in the first half" of 2009, said Swedbank chairman Michael Wolf Michael Wolf is the former COO of MTV Networks. Wolf formerly was a Director of McKinsey & Company, the international consultancy, and Head of its Global Media and Entertainment Practice. .

Swedbank shares were showing a gain of 6.9 percent to 51.75 kronor on the Stockholm exchange in late afternoon trade. The overall index was up 2.4 percent.
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Author:AFP
Publication:AFP Global Edition
Date:Jul 17, 2009
Words:250
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