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Wealthsimple laying off 13 per cent of staff amid 'market volatility'

A Wealthsimple program is shown on a cell phone. (Wealthsimple / THE CANADIAN PRESS) A Wealthsimple program is shown on a cell phone. (Wealthsimple / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
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Wealthsimple says it is laying off 13 per cent of its workforce as the financial services company faces "market volatility."

In a letter sent to staff of the Toronto-based business, chief executive Michael Katchen says 159 of the 1,262 people who work for Wealthsimple will depart the company through the move.

While Katchen notes the market soared and business grew at an unprecedented rate amid the pandemic, he says those conditions are now unwinding and Wealthsimple's clients are living through a period of market uncertainty they've never experienced before.

Katchen says the changing conditions will mean the company will now focus more heavily on core businesses, like investing and banking, and products he believes will power financial innovation, like cryptocurrencies.

Wealthsimple will reduce its investment in other areas like peer-to-peer payments, tax, and merchant services and restructuring teams dedicated to recruiting, marketing, client success and research.

Wealthsimple's job cuts come as global technology companies are freezing hiring and conducting layoffs while they brace for a market correction and possible recession after the pandemic saw tech stocks soar.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 15, 2022.

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