Italy's BPER reaches job cut targets in plan

MILAN, Oct 30 (Reuters) - Italy's sixth-largest lender BPER Banca EMII.MI will reach its three-year target of job cuts after an agreement with the trade unions over 1,289 early retirements, the bank said on Wednesday.

Under the agreement BPER, headquartered in the northern Emilia Romagna region, will hire 645 new workers, the bank said in a statement.

Under a three-year plan 2019-2021, presented in February, the bank aims to shed 1,300 jobs and shut about 230 branches out of a network of nearly 1,500 to cut operating costs by 2.6 percent annually.

(Reporting by Gianluca Semeraro; editing by Stephen Jewkes)

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