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Japan’s Nomura cuts investment banking jobs in Dubai

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Tokyo-based brokerage shrinks its Middle East footprint and moves coverage of the region to staff in other offices

Nomura Holdings has cut about a half dozen investment banking jobs in Dubai, as Japan’s biggest brokerage shrinks its Middle East footprint and moves coverage of the region to staff in other offices.

The Tokyo-based firm made the cuts in recent weeks, and will now serve Middle Eastern clients from cities where it has bigger operations, such as London, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Its asset management and global markets divisions will keep their on-the-ground presence, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

Nomura has been overhauling its global wholesale business since April last year in a bid to save $1 billion in costs and sustain profitability abroad. New CEO Kentaro Okuda has persisted with those efforts by cutting dozens of investment banking jobs in the US, Bloomberg reported in July.

The firm obtained its licence to operate from Dubai’s financial center in 2009 after acquiring parts of Lehman Brothers Holdings during the global financial crisis.

Investment banks have gradually scaled back their presence in the United Arab Emirates in recent years amid a lack of major deals. Nomura struggled to meet competition from banks like HSBC that deployed their massive balance sheets in the region, and from more specialized firms like Moelis & Co, one of the people said.

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