BofA to Cut From Elite Ranks


Amid the banking industry's relentless belt-tightening, even Bank of America Corp.'s moneymakers aren't safe.
The Charlotte, N.C., company is planning about 2,000 staff cuts in its investment banking, commercial banking and non-U.S. wealth-management units, said people familiar with the situation. Those operations were vastly expanded with Bank of America's 2009 purchase of Merrill Lynch & Co.



The reductions are significant because of whom they target: the high-earning employees whose efforts helped Merrill Lynch account for the bulk of Bank of America's profit since the financial crisis.
Soaring sales of smartphones lifted Samsung Electronics Co.'s profit to a record in the first quarter and apparently pushed the South Korean company past Nokia Corp. as the world's biggest cellphone seller.

Samsung may also have passed Apple Inc. as the world's top seller of smartphones, though analysts disagreed on that, giving widely varying estimates of Samsung's output. Other cellphone manufacturers disclose unit shipments of their products, but Samsung stopped doing so a year ago.
Even so, its overall financial announcement underscored the importance of Samsung's transition to smartphones

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