Deutsche Bank Said to Reduce Latin America Equities Staff

Deutsche Bank AG is reducing its equities team in Latin America and considering closing that business in Chile as companies sell fewer shares and the firm reins in costs, two people with knowledge of the matter said.

Germany’s biggest lender is eliminating staff for that business in Sao Paulo, Santiago and New York, the people said, asking not to be named because the decision isn’t public. The bank doesn’t plan cuts in Mexico, a location it deems a priority along with Brazil, one of the people said.

The reductions stem from the firm’s plan announced in 2012 to shrink annual costs by 4.5 billion euros ($6.2 billion) by 2015, one of people said. The Frankfurt-based company will continue investing in more profitable businesses in Latin America, the person said.

Deutsche Bank is this year’s top equity underwriter in Latin America, where total offerings have slumped to $1.78 billion with 12 deals, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That compares with $11.5 billion in the same period last year. For all of 2013, the firm ranked 16th while competing for parts of 79 deals totaling $32.4 billion. Equity-trading fees are also being reduced in Latin America, one of the people said.

Renee Calabro, a spokeswoman for Deutsche Bank, declined to comment.

Mario Pierry, a Sao Paulo-based analyst who covered 12 companies including Latin America’s two biggest banks, left Deutsche Bank, a person familiar with matter said last week. Tito Labarta, based in New York, is leading the bank’s coverage of the region’s financial industry, the person said.

Deutsche Bank has added other people to its Latin America operations in recent months. Marcelo Saad, previously of Credit Suisse Group AG, joined as co-head of corporate banking and securities in Brazil in January. Maria Cristina “Kika” Ricciardi started in March as head of global transaction banking for Latin America. She also is in charge of trade finance and cash management for corporates at the region.

In October, Deutsche Bank hired Armando Armenta as a Latin America economist covering Colombia, Peru and Venezuela.

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