Commerzbank of Germany has instituted a recruitment freeze and cuts in IT projects after reporting a disappointing set of half yearly results.
The German bank is reporting a pre-tax profit of EUR495 million for the year to end-June, 73.9% down on the comparable period last year. Discounting the proceeds from the IPO of Comdirect, which buouyed the previous year's trading figures, the results for the first six months still show a decline of more than fifty per cent.
The bank blamed "difficult economic and capital-market conditions" and a rise in costs for the poor showing. Overall, operating expenses in the first six months were 17.8% higher than a year previously.
The board has approved a set of short-term measures in a bid to slow the surge in costs, including a recruitment freeze and cuts in IT projects. Combined these actions are expected to achieve savings of EUR240 million. The bank declined to provide details on which areas of its business would be most affected by the cuts.