Tuesday's Headlines: Barclays lays off thousands to boost shareholder returns

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Barclays Bank plans to cut almost 3,000 jobs this year as it aims to stem a decline in profits, Financial Times reports.

The news comes after the UK bank posted a 33% drop in profits for the first half of 2011. Barclays CEO Bob Diamond says the reductions are part of a strategy to improve shareholder returns.

"A day after rival bank HSBC revealed a plan for sweeping job losses, Barclays said its headcount had been cut by 1,400 in the first six months of the year, dropping from 147,500 to 146,100. It said the reduction in the second half of the year was likely to equal or exceed that total," the Financial Times writes.

Other News:

HSBC says competition for bankers in Asia pushing up wage costs. [BusinessWeek]

BNP Paribas misses forecasts on slow retail, investment banking business. [Reuters]

Bankers turned regulators hamper financial crisis clean-up efforts. [DealBook]

Greek banks should try mergers with foreign banks to improve funding opportunities, OECD says. [Bloomberg]

Freedom Bank of Virginia promotes president Underhill to CEO. [Biz Journals]

Standard Chartered earnings seen climbing amid spending cuts, analysts say. [Bloomberg]

HSBC's Stuart Gulliver must continue cutting costs to meet ROE target by 2013. [Wall Street Journal]

BRIC banks losing stock value as concerns about bad loans underline risks. [Bloomberg]

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