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Bank of Ireland Axes U.S. Jobs after Mandate Losses

Bank of Ireland is cutting jobs in its U.S. asset management operation after clients pulled $16 billion in mandates last year.

The group was the fifth-largest manager of international equities for North American institutions but has just $11.7 billion in assets for U.S. clients. The figure is believed to have fallen further following more losses in the past four months.

Poor performance and the departure of leading staff to a rival manager were the reasons for clients removing their assets.

Ciaran O'Neill, a senior fund manager, left last month, eight weeks after joining with a remit to stem U.S. losses.

A Bank of Ireland Asset Management spokeswoman said: "As a result of these developments, our business in North America is over-resourced and we are looking at ways to redeploy some of our U.S. staff."

It said there were opportunities to transfer some staff to other parts of the group but redundancies had not been ruled out.

The North American operation was set up in 1987 and employs 46 in the U.S. and Canada. Bank of Ireland employs a further 39 people, who work for Iridian Asset Management, its domestic equity operation.

Meanwhile, the Anglo-U.S. fund group Amvescap is set to report further losses tomorrow from its U.S. institutional and retail operations.

Rupak Ghose, research analyst at Credit Suisse First Boston, has forecast new business outflows of $5 billion in the U.S.

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