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Businesses reshaping

Jobs bloodbath as firms unveil cutbacks

John Lewis and Lloyds

Big names and big cutbacks

Hundreds of retail and banking jobs are being cut as the pandemic and ongoing pressures add to a grim employment outlook.

Sainsbury’s is expected to confirm plans to cut at least 3,000 jobs within its Argos chain and in its supermarkets, adding to 1,500 at John Lewis, 730 at Lloyds Banking Group and 700 at shoe chain Clarks.

Clarks will cut at least 700 jobs as part of a shake-up of its shop management and store estate. About two staff members from each store are expected to go as part of a proposed rescue deal with its landlords. Clarks confirmed the changes as the founding family agreed to sell a majority stake in the business to the private equity firm LionRock Capital.

The John Lewis Partnership is cutting a further 1,500 jobs at its head office, having already shed 1,390 roles.

It said the latest wave of cuts would strip out layers of back office functions and remove duplication across its brands.


Finance director, Patrick Lewis, the great-grandson of its founder and the only family member still working for the business, will leave the company after 26 years.

Lloyds said there will be 1,070 job cuts as part of its major restructuring programme.

It will result in a net reduction of around 730 roles, as it is creating 340 positions across the business.

The cuts will mainly affect staff in its group transformation and retail banking teams, but there will be no further branch closures.

In September Lloyds announced 865 jobs will go mainly in its insurance, wealth and retail teams.

A Lloyds Banking spokeswoman confirmed a net reduction of around 730 roles from the latest cull.

The Unite union has branded the move as a “shameful decision”, and called for the bank to postpone its restructuring efforts amid the rising threat of Covid-19.

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