Ping An Bank to Relocate Shanghai Staff to Shenzhen to Cut Costs

Ping An Bank is relocating over 100 staff from its Shanghai office to its Shenzhen headquarters as part of a cost-cutting measure, sources familiar with the matter disclosed. This move affects employees in the retail business and information technology departments, who have been given the choice to move or leave the bank, with compensation based on performance.

The decision does not impact the bank’s fixed income, currency, and commodities trading operations, which will remain in Shanghai. A spokesperson from Ping An Bank stated that the adjustments are aimed at ensuring stable business operations while protecting employee rights.

Since 2022, Ping An Bank has been overhauling its retail business due to a rise in bad loans and a struggling economy. Last year, the retail division, including consumer lending and credit cards, contributed only 11.9% to group profits, down from 43.6% in 2022.

This relocation comes amid broader challenges in China’s financial industry, which is facing tighter government control. Banks and brokerages have been reducing pay and perks, while the overall economic climate remains weak. Domestic consumers and international investors have shown decreased confidence, impacting demand for new credit.

Despite these challenges, Ping An Bank’s shares have risen nearly 6% in Shenzhen this year, outperforming the 4.2% increase in the CSI 300 Financial Index. However, the overall profitability of China’s commercial banks has seen minimal growth, with a 0.7% increase in the first quarter, while outstanding bad loans have reached a record 3.37 trillion yuan.

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