Credit Suisse CEO calls State Street takeover questions ‘really dumb’

ZURICH, June 9 (Reuters) – Credit Suisse (CSGN.S) chief executive Thomas Gottstein on Thursday called questions about a potential bid for U.S. financial giant State Street (STT.N) “really stupid” , closing the questions after a media inquiry. report on the matter sent shares briefly higher the previous day. Read more

“We never comment on rumours. And my father once gave me advice: for really stupid questions, it’s better not to comment at all,” Gottstein said, reporting on a related question at the European Financial Conference. from Goldman Sachs. Read more

“So I think I’ll take my dad’s advice on this one.”

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Credit Suisse shares soared on Wednesday afternoon, with traders citing a report from Swiss financial news blog Inside Paradeplatz that US-based State Street was planning a takeover bid for the troubled lender, although many industry players have expressed doubts about this claim. Read more

Switzerland’s second-largest lender has described 2022 as a “transition” year as it attempts to turn the page on costly scandals that have led to a near-total senior management reshuffle and restructuring aimed at reducing risk-taking, especially in its investment bank. .

Its shares have lost almost half their value since two of the biggest shocks – the collapse of $10 billion in supply chain finance funds linked to Greensill Capital and a loss of more than $5 billion. dollars on the settlement of transactions by the investment company Archegos – hit the bank in March 2021.

The moves have raised questions about whether the flagship Swiss lender could be challenged by investors demanding its dissolution, or whether its falling stock market value made it a target for a hostile foreign takeover.

Reuters reported in April 2021 that State Street was among the investors that expressed interest in Credit Suisse’s asset management arm.

Gottstein said Thursday that no joint ventures or strategic options were on the table for the company, adding that asset management remained a key division for Credit Suisse.

The bank warned on Wednesday of a likely second-quarter loss and said it was now aiming to cut costs. Read more

Gottstein said that along with accelerating cost initiatives, the bank would also slow down some of its investments.

“In some areas we’re waiting a little bit with some of the growth investments,” he said. “In China, we had planned to increase relationship managers by about a third each year (from 2022 to 2024). This growth of RM, we will slow down a bit.”

The bank, however, remains committed to its plans in China, he said, disputing a Bloomberg report earlier Thursday.

“I want to be very clear: our global rollout in China is on track. There has been news that we are delaying our license application for the (licensed bank), which is not true. We are on the right track on this. We also want to achieve 100% on our securities joint venture in China,” he said.

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(Reporting by Brenna Hughes Neghaiwi, editing by Miranda Murray and Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

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