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For more on the financial crisis, check out GlobeSt.com’s Webinar, “Wall Street In a Freefall—The Winners and Losers.”

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND-UBS, based here, will lay off 2,000 employees, mostly in the US and the UK, due to troubles brought on by investing too heavily in the US sub-prime mortgage market. The company reportedly has written down about $42 billion from the sub-prime crisis, and has restructured to avoid inter-department borrowing that helped lead to the write-downs.A spokesman for the firm tells GlobeSt.com that the company will also cut back substantially on its real estate divisions, though UBS fund-sponsored projects will continue as planned. “We’re just cutting back on the financing side, to preserve our core strengths,” he says.

Jerker Johannson, chairman and CEO of the company, said in a statement Friday that the ongoing crisis in the financial markets and dramatically-changed industry dynamics forced the firm to recalibrate its business. “While the revenue outlook is uncertain, these measures will allow us to focus on our strengths, reduce the cost base to a more sustainable level and position our core businesses for growth once fundamentals improve,” he said in the statement.

The company is taking steps such as building on its equities business and investment banking; repositioning its fixed income, currencies and commodities business; exiting all commodities except for precious metals, downsize real estate, securitization and proprietary trading; and preserve core foreign exchange, rates and credit businesses.

With the changes, with the culmination of losing a total of 6,000 employees since third quarter 2007, company officials said that the firm should reach a profit in Q3 2008. The firm hasn’t seen a profit in the past four quarter. The company’s stock closed at $19.95 on Friday, still keeping a rebound going in a recovery from a slide down to $15.55 on Sept. 29.

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