Jobs Keep Vanishing on the Incredible Shrinking Wall Street

Wall Street is still shrinking—at least in and around the Manhattan namesake for the entire financial sector.

In the past year, the number of workers in the New York City securities industry fell by 3 percent to 163,400, according to a report released this morning by New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli. There are now almost 26,000 fewer workers on Wall Street than there were before the 2008 recession.

The downsizing is partly a result of smarter spending decisions by bank executives. Human capital and real estate are typically much cheaper in such places as Utah, where Goldman Sachs has moved at least 5 percent of its workforce, and Jacksonville, Fla., where Deutsche Bank has been building a stable of traders and mergers and acquisitions specialists. Only about one in five Wall Street jobs is now based in New York, according to DiNapoli, down from almost one-third in 1993.

New Yorkers seem to be finding other things to do–coding apps and cooking cronuts—rather than packaging synthetic collateralized debt obligations. DiNapoli pointed out that the city has added 335,000 private-sector jobs since the recession, more than double the number of positions lost in the downturn.

Some 26,000 of those positions came from tech companies, according to a separate study (PDF) commissioned by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg (whose Bloomberg LP owns Bloomberg Businessweek).

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