HK & SG
to Weather the Storm
Kong and Singapore are unlikely to benefit from the growing trend for Wall
Street banks to offshore not just their back-office work but more senior
'knowledge process' or 'high value' outsourcing is becoming more popular at
firms including Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan, Credit Suisse and
banks began sending research jobs to emerging markets like India a few years
ago, but the next outsourcing wave may include more sophisticated roles,
such as the creation of derivative products and quantitative trading models,
according to recruiters.
Hong Kong and Singapore, as high-cost centres suffering from skill
shortages, are unlikely to profit from this new outsourcing, says James
Carss, a director at Hudson.
contrast, the Philippines, which already hosts established operations from
JPMorgan, Deutsche Bank and Thomson-Reuters, looks set to reap further
rewards from Wall Street's continued cost cutting, says Richard Mills,
chairman of recruitment agency Chalre Associates.
Philippines is already a contender but you don't hear from them because they
are terrible at self-promotion. India, on the other hard, is world-class in
this regard," says Mills.
Perera, group managing director of Spire Research & Consultancy, says
the outsourcing of middle-office work such as data analysis, research and
report writing is not a new phenomenon. “There have been thriving pockets
of such outsourced activity in India and Sri Lanka since the downturn of
2001/2002, if not earlier,” he says.
Perera thinks the current financial crisis could be the tipping point beyond
which the migration of these jobs to emerging markets becomes the norm
rather than the exception.
are not ruling out the day where investment banks gradually evolve into a
different structure where only the top dealmakers are based in the West.
Mills comments: "New York will become the place only for the very top
decision makers to reside."
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