Wall Street Hits Pause On Return To Offices

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As coronavirus cases once again climb in New York, financial firms continue to grapple with when they can realistically return to business-as-usual.

Several Wall Street banks and investment firms, including Citigroup, Jefferies Financial Group, and Bank of America, have reversed efforts to get staff back to the office as the Omicron variant of the virus spreads across the Northeast.

Deutsche Bank has encouraged its New York staff to work remotely for the last two weeks of the year and are likely to continue working remotely for several weeks into 2022. Meanwhile, Wells Fargo has also delayed its return-to-office plans. In a statement, the bank said, “Given the changing external environment, we are delaying our return-to-office plans.”

“We are continuing to closely monitor the environment with the health and wellbeing of our employees as our priority,” Wells said. “We look forward to fully returning our teams back to the office.”

New York City is being hit hard by Omicron. Last week, cases rose by around 60%.

Speaking to Reuters, Neal Mills, chief medical officer for the professional services firm Aon said that, while employers are targeting February as a date to make the return, the situation is changing fast. As such, employers “are reluctant to do any communications”, Mills said.

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