AUSTIN-Charles Schwab & Co. Inc. has christened its fifth investor center in the US, a move expecting to generate 3,500 new jobs over the long term.

The leading financial services company currently has 400 employees at the state-of-the-art facility at 12401 Research Blvd., but anticipates beefing up that count by 600 by year’s end and another 2,000 by the end of 2001. Schwab ultimately expects to house 3,500 employees in the four-building complex. Schwab is sponsoring a job fair Oct. 3 at Austin’s Omni Hotel for prospective employees.

Schwab also operates investor centers in Denver, Indianapolis, Orlando and Phoenix. Each investor center employs a mix of registered representatives, technologists, operations specialists, call team members, and managers. New employees undergo a six-week training program and four months later, a five-week trades class that teaches how to place stock, mutual fund, option and bond trades.

Charles Schwab, chairman and co-CEO, says Austin’s lure is the city’s “entrepreneurial spirit” and skilled labor pool. The company maintains two offices in Austin and 23 others in Texas. Schwab recently opened a Latin America Center office in San Antonio. Austin also is home to Schwab’s newest subsidiary, CyBerCorp, which caters to on-line investors.

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