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MBA Won't Protect You From Layoffs: Broker CEO

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The chief executive of a top ten U.S. retail brokerage firm is predicting another round of layoffs in the financial industry over the next quarter—and not even an MBA from a top tier school may offer protection.

John Taft, the Chairman of the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) and the CEO of RBC U.S. Wealth Management, said he's hearing firms are planning to cut back due to the skittish market and softening economy. Just yesterday, Goldman Sachs announced it is cutting three percent of its workforce.

He said staff reductions will likely affect all levels—even those with years of experience and expensive MBA degrees.

"I think the paper value of an MBA might be overstated," said Taft. "For it to be useful, it needs to form part of a wider package of skills and attributes, and more than a mere credential next to your name."

Taft said on the job experience in the capacity to perform in the workplace is more important than whether or not you have your MBA.

His thoughts come as enrollment at the nation's top business schools is growing—as well as online MBA programs that cost tends of thousands of dollars. In fact, Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina began its first ever online MBA program this month. Students have been shelling out $89,000 in tuition for it.

Even though an MBA degree will not necessarily protect your job or revitalize your salary, Taft acknowledges there is an argument supporting the usefulness of MBA degrees. He said they are often best used to reposition yourself and redirect your career.



Stephanie is Squawk Box producer. Follow her on twitter @StephLandsman

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