March 30, 2015 / 8:34 PM / 2 years ago

Compensation costs down 20 percent in Goldman Sachs European arm

LONDON (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs International, the European arm of the Wall Street bank, saw compensation costs fall 20 percent in 2014 to $3 billion compared to a year earlier, according to its annual report.

The number of staff at Goldman Sachs International rose 2 percent to 5,582 compared to 2013, meaning on average each employee was paid around $543,000 in 2014, according to the report posted on the bank's website.

Average pay was still higher than that of the overall group. Some $12.7 billion was set aside to pay 34,000 staff worldwide in 2014, equating to an average per employee of $373,265.

Based in New York, Goldman Sachs has let dozens of high-earning partners walk out to make room for more junior employees who earn less. It has moved as many jobs as it can to cities like Bangalore in India and Salt Lake City and Dallas in the U.S., where wages are lower than in New York or London.

The group used 36.8 percent of its revenue for compensation last year, slightly down from 2013. At Goldman Sachs International that ratio stood at 51.5 percent.

Goldman Sachs paid its top 121 London bankers about 3 million pounds each ($4.44 million) on average last year, far exceeding payouts at other leading banks, data released in December showed.

($1 = 0.6761 pounds)

Reporting by Anjuli Davies; editing by Andrew Roche

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