Wall Street’s Scary Season

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Photo: Mary-Louise Price; Photos: ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP/Getty Images, iStockphoto, Jemal Countess/Getty Images for Time, Inc.

Analyst Meredith Whitney's prediction that Wall Street could be laying off 80,000 people in the coming year and that the fourth quarter in particular will see a "bloodbath" may be coming true: Following news of redundancies at DE Shaw comes news of layoffs at hedge fund Citadel and now, rumors of a 10 percent workforce reduction at $63 billion hedge fund The Man Group. Meanwhile, Bank of America is reportedly laying off up to 400 people, and Morgan Stanley, which froze hiring back in September and posted weak earnings this quarter, has ruled out layoffs "until the end of the year," which is, you know, like two months away. But stop your righteous cackling, wounded populace — unfortunately, Wall Street unemployment is a leading indicator for the rest of the labor market. In other words, we're next.