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Report: Commerzbank to cut 9,000 jobs, cancel 2016 dividend

is planning tocut about 9,000 jobs by 2020 as part of a restructuring process that has beenapproved by the board of directors and is expected to cost the lender up to €1billion, prompting the cancellation of its 2016 dividend, Handelsblatt reported Sept. 26, citing unnamed sources.

CEOMartin Zielke wants to digitize work processes as much as possible, thenewspaper said, adding that it is not clear if reducing Commerzbank's workforceby nearly a fifthcould be achieved organically or whether it would require layoffs. As part ofthe proposed changes — which remain subject to supervisory board approval andwill be officially announced Sept. 30 — some executives will also lose theirjobs, according to Handelsblatt'ssources.

Commerzbankintends to merge its division for lending to medium-sized firms, ormittelstand, into its investment arm, the newspaper wrote, confirming anearlier report. Theretail unit will be responsible for lending to smaller corporate clients,likely those with assets of up to €15 million, it added.  

Thelender will also significantly reduce its securities trading activities, Handelsblatt said, adding that theequity markets and commodities division headed up by Roberto Vila will beheavily affected by these measures. Some investment-banking business linesmight be sold off, with Commerzbank of being able to find buyers, according tothe newspaper's sources.