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Job outlook gloomy for Bear staffers

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Scott Jagow: Within the next day or so Bear Stearns employees will learn their fates. Some estimates suggest buyer JPMorgan could lay off as many as half of Bear’s 14,000 employees as it consolidates the two firms. From New York, Ashley Milne-Tyte takes a look at the job prospects for out-of-work investment bankers.


Ashley Milne-Tyte: Laid-off Bear employees will be joining a labor pool already packed with thousands of casualties from the credit crunch. Alan Johnson runs a compensation consulting firm in New York.

Alan Johnson: Wall Street is on net getting rid of people, so they’re doing relatively little hiring. So, with the people leaving Bear and other places, it’s a pretty bleak hiring environment for them.

Others are more optimistic. Eric Moscowitz is with Options Group, an executive search firm. He says Bear Stearns workers are highly regarded within their industry. And some hedge funds and smaller banks are ready to snap them up.

Eric Moscowitz: If a Bear Stearns employee can be picked up, so to speak, on the cheap, that is sometimes a very good time to pick up talent that can add immediately to a firm’s balance sheet.

His firm receives 50 to 100 Bear Stearns resumes a day. He says candidates may have to wait months for the New York job market to pick up. But if they’re willing to move abroad, there are plenty of opportunities. Sao Paulo anyone?

In New York, I’m Ashley Milne-Tyte for Marketplace.

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