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Citi May Add N.J., Connecticut Offices to Ease Workers’ Commuting Costs

·2 min read

(Bloomberg) -- Citigroup Inc. Chief Executive Jane Fraser said her bank is considering providing “additional facilities” in New Jersey and Connecticut as the bank’s New York City staffers contend with rising commuting costs.

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“We very much appreciate how expensive it is getting for all our people to commute,” Fraser said at a House Financial Services Committee hearing Wednesday. “We’re very mindful around that as well as being flexible for working families. And providing them more options, additional facilities and spaces for them to work either at home or in New Jersey or Connecticut are certainly things we’ve been looking at actively in the Tri-State area.”

Fraser’s comments came in response to questions from Rep. Josh Gottheimer, a democrat from New Jersey, who said he’s been working with state legislators to create tax incentives for New York employers who open up regional hubs in New Jersey to allow residents of his state to avoid the rising cost of commuting into Manhattan. That move comes as New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority is weighing plans to charge some motorists as much as $23 to drive into Manhattan’s central business district.

Wall Street’s largest employers have been trying to cajole more of their workers back to the office, but those efforts have been met with some resistance as employees report heightened concerns about safety on the subway and lament the cost of commuting as gas prices rise. Office towers across the city are still loosely staffed, with capacity reaching just 47% last week, according to data compiled by Kastle Systems.

Fraser, for her part, has long been one of the most vocal advocates for remote work even after the pandemic recedes. Most of the bank’s employees are expected to be in the office at least three days a week, though the bank did allow workers to be fully remote for two weeks last month.

(Updates with additional quote from Jane Fraser in second paragraph.)

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