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Morgan Stanley Says No Job Cuts in 2020, Fixes Tech Glitch

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Morgan Stanley’s New York headquarters (Photo: Bloomberg)

Morgan Stanley says it has resolved a problem with its wealth management technology.

The issue, which arose Wednesday, concerned “a bug from an external software provider,” according to a spokesperson, not issues tied to high trading volume or work-from-home staff. Clients were able to put in trades through our backup system or through an advisor.” 

The wirehouse, which has some 15,500 financial advisors, says clients negatively affected by the glitch will be remediated, which it was “in the process of doing” on Thursday. 

The problems lasted for four hours, according to a Bloomberg report. They were resolved by 3:30 p.m., says Morgan Stanley. 

The news comes about a month after the wirehouse announced plans to buy discount broker E-Trade Financial for $13 billion, creating a firm that could have over $3 trillion in client assets.

No Layoffs

Also on Thursday, Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman told employees in a memo that it planned to keep its employees on board throughout the year. (The memo was seen by ThinkAdvisor and its contents were confirmed by a bank spokesperson.)

“I am sure some, if not many, of you are worried about your jobs,” he explained. “While long term we can’t be sure how this will play out, we want to commit to you that there will not be a reduction in force at Morgan Stanley in 2020. Aside from a performance issue or a breach of the code of conduct, your jobs are secure.”

According to Gorman, some 90% of the bank’s employees are working from home due to the coronavirus. “I am incredibly proud of you! Working from home, supporting our clients and this great firm, and helping your families throughout the physical and mental stress,” he said.

Late last year, Morgan Stanley moved to trim some 1,500 jobs, or 2% of its global workforce, to boost efficiency in the face of weak trading revenue.

The cuts were set to include some managers in sales, trading and research, according to a Bloomberg report, and were focused on the technology and operations divisions.


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