Bank of America will lay off at least 3,500 employees in the next few months -- up to 10,000 in total -- including an unknown number of advisors from the bank's Merrill Lynch unit as a result of lower trading volume and reduced deal flow throughout the country's most recent economic downturn.

"I know it is tough to have to manage through reductions," CEO Brian Moynihan wrote in a memo to the company’s senior leadership late Thursday and obtained by The New York Times. “But we owe it to our customers and our shareholders to remain competitive, efficient and manage our expenses carefully.”

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