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"I'm being asked to work over 38 hours a week at a Paris bank"

I work for one of the biggest international banks in Paris, and my hours are excessive. 

Right now, all the employees working here have contracts with a limited number of working hours (only 38 hours per week). This applies to us all, including in corporate and investment banking, markets, and the legal team.  

In France, any work in excess of these hours needs to be declared on pay-slips, but this never happens. Instead, it's usual for us to work over-hours. The office is usually still half full after 6pm, we're expected to participate in video calls significantly later than that and management regularly call us after 6pm and copy us into emails. Over a three-year period, the excess has been significant. 

This matters, because French law allows heavy penalties for the infringement of working hours restrictions. Employee representatives have informed management for several years of the risks, but no actions have been taken. Employees who complain have had bonuses cut, some have left the bank. 

Management could yet ask us to sign contracts with unlimited working hours, but some people may not be eligible. Equally, we have the right to refuse to turn our contracts for limited working hours into contracts for unlimited working hours unless we're offered some compensation for that. Why would we agree to work long hours if not?

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AUTHORNatacha Bonnel Insider Comment
  • Da
    30 July 2022

    I do an average of 12 hours per week without extra perks. It is normal here. You are lucky doing less than 8 hours a day.

  • Da
    David Tole
    30 July 2022

    You are lucky; less than 8 hours per day. I do 12 hours per day (7am to 7pm) without extra pay and it is normal here.

  • Ba
    28 July 2022

    I work more than 35 hours per week... 7pm is when I dissapear...

  • Me
    27 July 2022

    are you kidding????

    38h/week is 7h36min/day , it's less than the opening hours of the european stock market (9:00am to 5:30pm CET). Would you ask sales and traders to come for less than the opening hours? who would cover while they're out?

    you have numerous days off thanks to that system that you're omitting to mention in your complaint.
    I'm really bamboozled by such an article. If you wanted to work 35h/week, there are numerous jobs in the French Public Administration in which you can get away with those 35h/week.Why go into a finance job if you want to work 35h/week ?

    35h/week is the legal standard in France, but no one paid as much as you must be is actually working 35h/week.
    Please find a job in a field that suits you best, but don't come crying when you see the compensation.

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