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Macquarie Said to Close Latin America Fixed-Income Group

Updated on

Sept. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Macquarie Group Ltd., Australia’s largest investment bank, closed its Miami office and shut down its Latin America fixed-income business, according to a person familiar with the matter.

John Welch, chief emerging-market strategist for the bank, was among those fired in the move, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the information hasn’t been made public. Paula Chirhart, a spokeswoman in New York for Sydney-based Macquarie, declined to comment.

Latin America bond sales are slowing as Europe’s debt crisis and the global economic slowdown erode demand for higher-yielding assets. The region’s companies and governments have sold $19.7 billion of bonds overseas since mid-June, a 16 percent drop from the previous three-month period.

The extra yield investors demand to own Latin American government bonds instead of Treasuries has risen 38 basis points, or 0.38 percentage point, this month and touched 457 basis points yesterday, the highest since July 2009, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co. indexes.

Macquarie may have to cut 1,000 jobs to offset a decline in trading and corporate advisory income, UBS AG analysts Jonathan Mott and Chris Williams wrote in a research note today. The bank employed about 15,500 workers as of March.

To contact the reporters on this story: Veronica Navarro Espinosa in New York at vespinosa@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Papadopoulos at papadopoulos@bloomberg.net

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