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Weekly News Roundup: Deutsche Bank Cuts Jobs, British Airways Faces Fines

Deutsche Bank Cutting Thousands of Jobs as part of “Reinvention”

German financial institution Deutsche Bank announced is it was cutting 18,000 jobs as part of an US$8.3 billion effort to restructure its image. The financial giant recently said it would scrap its global equities operations and cut some fixed income. The moves come as Deutsche Bank has been in the red for four out of the past five years after dealing with a series of setbacks. Ratings agency Moody’s called the move a “risky maneuver” and said it had the potential to bring the bank back on track, but for now it would maintain the bank’s negative outlook.

British Airways Faces US$230 Million Fine over Data Breach

The largest privacy-related penalty in Europe might hit British Airways after a UK privacy watchdog alleged that the airline was negligent for failing to protect passenger data after a 2018 hack. National privacy regulators across the European Union have gained power in light of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that swept across the bloc, aimed at holding companies accountable for protecting personal data. The proposed fine against the company threatens to become a warning sign for other companies throughout Europe that there will be consequences to not adhering to the strict new laws governing data privacy.

France Trying to Push Unemployed Back to Work

French President Emmanuel Macron is readying executive orders to force through changes to get his country’s unemployed back into the labor market, including the 20 percent who receive benefits that go beyond what they were paid while working. In order to qualify for benefits, strict changes will be enforced: welfare checks for previously high-salaried employees will be capped, and companies that rely on short-term contracts will be hit with higher payroll taxes in a bid to reduce the number of unemployment claims. Macron’s aim is to “make work pay,” but he is already seeing a backlash. Labor unions recently demonstrated in Paris, and organizations representing various employers denounced the crackdown on flexible contracts, which they say is vital for business. In addition, economists doubt Macron’s signature economic efforts will amount to much.

China Car Sales Continue Slump

Major automotive manufacturers are struggling in China as the country’s slowing economy is depressing the sale of new vehicles, further extending a yearlong downturn in the world’s largest car market after 30 years of growth. For the 12th straight month (June), sales slumped as consumers kept their wallets tighter amid uncertainty surrounding trade relations with the United States, and as car dealers inundated lots with older models in the hopes of getting rid of them before a new emissions rule takes effect. Ford, GM, and Fiat ChryslerAutomotive NV’s Jeep division are among those experiencing tough times, recording their worst first-half results in the country in many years.

GDPR Fines Boost Interest in Cyber Security

Interest in cyber insurance, cyber security, and legal advice saw a major uptick as it was revealed that British Airways and Marriott International may be fined a combined £282 million for data breaches. Mark Deem, senior partner at the law firm Cooley said “It’s undoubtedly a statement of intent and will make a lot of corporate UK sit up and take notice.” Martin Tyler, head of UK cyber and privacy at the consulting firm KPMG said he expected the Information Commissioner’s Office to use the full power of its enforcement capabilities granted by GDPR and that fines are just the beginning.

About the Author

Scott Sharon is a freelance writer who has contributed to Conducive Chronicle and World Policy Journal.

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