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UBS' Orcel says bank could move staff out of London

UBS GroupAG could consider moving a number of its employees from London toan EU country in the wake of the U.K.'s vote to leave the EU, Bloomberg News reported.

Andrea Orcel, head of the lender's investment bank, toldBloomberg Television that if financial companies in the U.K. were to lose theirpassporting rights and the euro-clearing business move out of London, it wouldhave a "significant impact" on where the Swiss bank bases itsemployees.

"We would need to consider moving a number of ouremployees to a European Union country," Orcel said, but did not specifyhow many employees would be involved. He said that should such a situationarise, it would require a complete reassessment of the bank's model in thefuture, Bloomberg noted in its July 12 report.

When questioned about potential job cuts, Orcel said UBS hasreduced its headcount to the right size and would only execute further employeedismissals if regulation, market environment and competition were to tightenfurther.

He noted that the lender's investment bank was focused onlimiting expenses and that hiring employees on a net basis in the currentenvironment was not possible. Sources earlier told the newswire that UBS hasimposed a partialhiring freeze at its wealth management arm. The investment division recentlyannounced leadership changes in various groups.

Orcel added that 2016 was goingto be a tough year regarding compensation and that 2017 could be the same,Bloomberg noted.