At Bank of America, senior executives have quietly encouraged younger employees to “dress down” to attract less attention as they make their way to BOA’s tower at 1 Bryant Park.
These execs have informed their staffers that dressing up, or wearing anything with a Bank of America logo, could mark them as a target. One bank employee told 'On The Money' he is on high alert after he spotted someone with a knife near the office during a recent trek to the Manhattan workplace.
Of course, it’s not just Bank of America where distress over crime pervades. The city reported a 15 percent increase in felony assaults over the past 28 days, as of Nov. 28, when compared to the same period a year ago, according to NYPD statistics. Murder rates have surged 42 percent over the past two years but remained essentially flat over the past year.
One top executive at a large money management firm even recently began carrying a Taser on his commute to his Midtown office, a person with direct knowledge of the matter told 'On The Money.'
And after daylight-saving time ended last month, more people are commuting home in the dark, giving worries over crime a renewed focus.
In areas surrounding Hudson Yards, the problem has been especially acute; for commuters coming into Penn Station or the Port Authority Bus Terminal, walking the few blocks to the Far West Side after dark on largely deserted streets, except for sometimes menacing vagrants, can feel dangerous, sources revealed to 'On The Money.'
Bank of America is adjacent to Times Square — and like Hudson Yards, many employees use Penn Station and Port Authority as transportation hubs en route to the office.
Bank of America declined to comment.
Some companies like Citibank are offering employees private shuttles to avoid public transportation altogether. And most major banks will offer employees car service if they work after hours.
It’s not just Midtown where crime has taken center stage. A Wall Street source who works downtown told 'On The Money' “it’s been a topic of conversation on the floor frequently over the last few months.”
“Some people I work with have been accosted … I’d say it’s becoming frequent, if not common,” the source noted. “There’s probably a dozen incidents that I saw, or have been involved in,” the person said — mostly verbal, but some physical.