CME to cut 5 percent of global workforce to reduce costs

Tue Oct 14, 2014 3:32pm EDT
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By Tom Polansek

CHICAGO (Reuters) - CME Group Inc (CME.O: Quote) plans to cut 5 percent of its global workforce, or about 150 jobs, to reduce costs with most cuts hitting its technology operations, the world's largest futures exchange operator said on Tuesday.

CME's Chicago headquarters will suffer the majority of the layoffs, although they will affect global offices, a spokeswoman said. Corporate and administrative jobs will be among those eliminated.

CME declined to detail how much money the staff reductions will save the company, which owns the Chicago Board of Trade and New York Mercantile Exchange.

The cuts could add about 5 cents to the company's earnings per share, said Rob Rutschow, analyst for CLSA

"While the financial impact isn’t huge, the signal it sends is," he said in a note.

"We have felt that CME as an organization hasn’t paid enough attention to expenses, and this announcement suggests that a greater focus on expenses is possible going forward."

Shares rose 0.8 percent to $79.65 in afternoon trading after touching a three-week low on Monday. They are up about 1.5 percent for the year.

Executive Chairman Terry Duffy said the job cuts and other expense reductions "will result in decreased costs and reduced management layers, and will help ensure the company's long-term continued growth." He added that CME was able to eliminate positions because of new efficiencies in the futures industry.   Continued...

The Chicago Mercantile Exchange is pictured March 17, 2008.  REUTERS/John Gress