November 30, 2010 / 8:02 PM / 7 years ago

Canada's National Bank slips on job cut report

* Reported cutting jobs on wholesale bank side

* Shares weaken on otherwise strong day for financials

* Canada’s No. 6 bank to report Q4 results after markets

TORONTO, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Shares of National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) eased on Tuesday following reports it had cut staff at its wholesale banking unit ahead of its release of fourth-quarter results.

The bank, Canada’s No. 6 lender, is cutting staff in its investment banking, research, sales and trading departments, the Globe and Mail newspaper said on its website.

The bank’s shares fell as much as 1.3 percent, before recovering somewhat. By mid-afternoon, they were down 35 Canadian cents, or 0.4 percent, at C$68.38 on an otherwise strong day for Toronto financial issues.

Claude Breton, a spokesman for National Bank, would not comment on the report.

In the recent financial crisis, it was the conservative lending practices of Canadian banks -- rooted in their domestic retail banking business -- that allowed them to emerge relatively unscathed.

“If they’re able to shift the focus somewhat (towards retail), that’s a more stable business,” said Juliette John, a portfolio manager at Bissett Investment Management. She said she had no firsthand knowledge of any job cuts.

National is scheduled to report results after markets close, and is expected by some to be the first major Canadian bank to raise its dividend following the financial crisis.

$1=$1.03 Canadian Reporting by Cameron French; editing by Rob Wilson

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