Deutsche Bank said to fire 10 energy traders as banks retrench

Other big banks have closed commodity trading units

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Deutsche Bank AG fired between 10 and 12 European power and natural gas traders in London as it cuts staff trading physical commodities, two people with knowledge of the matter said.

There are at least two traders still unwinding positions as Europe’s biggest lender is reducing trading in physical energy markets, said the people, who asked for anonymity because the information is private. Nick Bone, a company spokesman in London, declined to comment when reached yesterday by phone.

Deutsche Bank, based in Frankfurt, follows JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Bank of America Corp. in shutting units trading commodities because of tighter regulation in Europe and the U.S. after the financial crisis. The bank has also made cuts among its U.S. gas and power traders, a person briefed on the matter said in December.

The London-based traders at Deutsche Bank left in early December, the people said. The company is still offering commodityderivatives and clearing services from Frankfurt, according to a leaflet available at its stand at a conference in Essen, Germany on Feb. 6.

The bank posted a fourth-quarter loss of 2.17 billion euros ($2.9 billion), compared with a 147 million-euro profit a year earlier, according to a Jan. 31 earnings statement.

Deutsche Bank last month named Louise Kitchen and Richard Jefferson as co-heads of commodities. Both are based in London and are replacing David Silbert. The bank has been trading European power and gas markets since at least 2003.

Bloomberg News

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