Credit Suisse will not abandon investment bank: chairman

Credit Suisse will not abandon investment bank: chairman
Credit Suisse headquarters at Paradeplatz, Zurich (Photo: Credit Suisse Group).
Swiss banking giant Credit Suisse will stick with its investment bank and does not plan a major overhaul similar to the one recently announced by UBS, the bank's chairman said in an interview published on Saturday.

"It is true that there are some people who expect us to completely pull out of investment banking," Credit Suisse chairman Urs Rohner told the Basler Zeitung daily.

However, he said, "these people do not realize that the capital market business is critical for the functioning of efficient global markets and important for a globally oriented economy like Switzerland's."

Switzerland's second largest bank was therefore planning to remain "at the forefront" of the investment banking sector, he said.

His comments came after Credit Suisse's larger competitor UBS announced on October 30th it would cut nearly 10,000 jobs as part of a massive restructuring of its ailing investment bank.

The overhaul involves shedding some high-risk activities and essentially withdrawing from the fixed income business that had burdened it with catastrophic losses during the 2008 "subprime" crisis.

While ruling out such radical measures for Credit Suisse, Rohner did acknowledge that some restructuring of the investment bank unit might be needed.

"It is possible that we will have to carry out further adaptations in terms of staff," he said in the article, published a day after Credit Suisse announced it would cut 300 jobs in Switzerland as part of a plan to merge its retail and private banking units.

He acknowledged that the investment bank was still absorbing 60 percent of Credit Suisse's own capital.

"That is too much in the long term," he said.

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