September 18, 2019 / 3:06 PM / 3 months ago

SocGen to present French retail restructuring plan to unions - Challenges

FILE PHOTO: The logo of French bank Societe Generale is pictured at a bank buidling in Paris, France, April 10, 2019. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

PARIS (Reuters) - Societe Generale SOGNPA>, France’s third-biggest lender, is to present a new restructuring plan to unions on Sept. 20 that could affect 20 percent of retail banking employees in the country, business magazine Challenges reported on Wednesday.

Banking analysts expect French banks to accelerate cost cutting as lenders struggle to meet profitability targets on the back of a long period of rock-bottom interest rates.

Marie-Christine Ducholet, the new head of French retail business at SocGen, would meet unions on Friday, Challenges said, citing sources. The bank confirmed the meeting, Challenges said.

SocGen did not respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Unions had a meeting with chief executive Frederic Oudea on Sept. 12 at which he neither confirmed nor denied rumours about possible additional cost cuts.

Oudea told staff the bank would continue its “search for ways of reducing costs”, according to the hardleft CGT union.

Reporting by Maya Nikolaeva; editing by Richard Lough

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