THE jobs of almost 80 North East banking staff are at risk after Barclays said it will no longer offer financial planning advice through its retail branches.
The bank said 28 staff, who provide the service from its 90-strong branch network in the region, and 50 staff at its Sunderland contact centre face the axe.
Barclays blamed its financial planning service decision, which is likely to lead to around 1,000 job losses around the country, on a decline in the commercial viability of the services in recent years which it expected to continue. Customers were increasingly buying and managing their investments online, the bank said.
It proposes to offer retail investment services solely online.
In a statement, the bank said: “Barclays has been conducting a detailed review of its financial planning advice over recent months.
“This review has concluded that, given the changes to the retail investment market place, it is unlikely this business would be able to deliver a return that would justify the investment required.”
Rob MacGregor, national officer of the Unite union, said: “Barclays management should hang their heads in shame as 1,000 hard-working staff are told they no longer have a job at the bank.”
The financial planning telephone advice centre at its Sunderland operation at Doxford Park, which employs over 1,500 staff, was opened less than three years ago.