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Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce on Thursday said it will expand its U.S. energy investment banking team and announced an increase in wages from July for the majority of its merit-eligible employees, according to separate internal memos seen by Reuters.

Canada’s fifth-biggest bank is growing its 100-strong core global energy, infrastructure and transition (EIT) investment banking team with the addition of four directors in the United States.

Rutuja Jagtap has joined as executive director in New York from Mizuho, where she covered renewables and energy transition.

CIBC and Scotiabank to boost base salaries for majority of staff, matching rival banks

Neil Davids, David Janashvili and David Yeh are managing directors, the former two joining from BNP Paribas and Canaccord Genuity, also in New York, both with prior energy transition and renewables experience. Yeh, a climate investor and a senior adviser in President Barack Obama’s administration, will be based in CIBC’s new San Francisco office.

The expansion comes even as investment banks and other firms in the U.S. slow hiring as concerns about inflation and a tight labour market.

Separately, CIBC said it will raise its minimum entry wage to $20 per hour in Canada and in the U.S. in each country’s currency, from $17 currently, and will lift it to $25 by the end of 2025, the memo said. It will also increase base salaries 3% for the lowest six employee levels, it said.

“These investments build on the steady, strategic targeted investments we have been making as we continue to ensure we pay competitively … particularly at a time when the cost of living has been increasing,” CEO Victor Dodig said in the memo.

CIBC last month missed quarterly profit estimates, in part due to higher expenses driven by spending on strategic initiatives, including in the U.S., and employee compensation, but the bank has said spending is expected to moderate in the second half.

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