FT: Credit Suisse Is Thinking About Dividing Its Investment Bank Into Three

The Financial Times reported on Thursday that Credit Suisse Group AG has developed plans to divide its investment bank into three as the Swiss lender tries to recover from three years of nonstop scandals.

According to the report, which cited people familiar with the plans, the bank is looking to sell profitable divisions like its securitized products business in order to avoid a damaging capital raise.

There were no comments from Credit Suisse.

According to the proposals, the investment bank could be divided into three sections: the advisory business of the group, which could be spun off at a later date; a “bad bank” to hold high-risk assets that will be wound down; and the remaining portions of the company.

“We have said we will update on progress on our comprehensive strategy review when we announce our third-quarter earnings,” the newspaper report quoted Credit Suisse as saying. “It would be premature to comment on any potential outcomes before then.”

The bank had been hit by a corporate spying scandal, investment fund closures, a record trading loss, and a slew of lawsuits in recent years, the report said. Chair Axel Lehmann had appointed Ulrich Körner as CEO in the summer with a mandate to implement a radical shake-up of the bank.

The second-largest bank in Switzerland, Credit Suisse, was reportedly looking to eliminate 5,000 jobs, or roughly one out of every ten positions, earlier this month as part of a cost-cutting initiative. View More

Reuters reported in May that the bank was just beginning to consider options to increase its capital after a string of losses had reduced its financial reserves.

(Adapted from FT.com)

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