Former Credit Suisse shareholder sells all stake in bank

© Reuters. File photo: The Swiss flag flutters above the logo of Swiss bank Credit Suisse in front of a branch in Bern, Switzerland, on November 29, 2022. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo

(Reuters) – Harris Associates, one of Credit Suisse’s long-term major shareholders, has sold all of its stake in the Swiss bank after it became impatient with continued losses and a strategy to stem customer outflow, Financial said. The Times reported on Sunday.

Harris, who has remained loyal despite a string of scandals at Credit Suisse, disclosed a roughly 10% stake in the bank last August, but cut it to 5% in January.

Harris began reducing its exposure in October after Credit Suisse raised 4 billion Swiss francs ($4.3 billion) from investors, and when the Saudi National Bank replaced Harris as the top investor. David Hero, vice chairman of Harris Associates, told the Financial Times.

“There are questions about the future of the franchise. There has been a huge outflow from wealth management,” the newspaper quoted Helo. Credit Suisse reports a sharp acceleration in withdrawals in the fourth quarter, with over CHF 110 billion ($120 billion) outflows.

“There are many other investment options,” he added. “Rising interest rates mean many European financial institutions are headed in the opposite direction. Why go to something that is burning capital when the rest of the sector is currently generating capital? Is it?”

Herro has confirmed to Reuters that Harris has sold shares in Credit Suisse on the market over the past few months. For other details, he referred a newspaper report to Reuters.

“We are ahead of the curve and have clear strategic objectives,” Credit Suisse said in an emailed statement to Reuters on Sunday.

“We are committed to successfully executing our plan and making progress towards our goals to ensure that the new Credit Suisse delivers sustainable value to all our stakeholders. ‘ added the statement.

Switzerland’s second-largest bank has begun a major overhaul of its business, including the launch of another investment banking business under the CS First Boston brand, cutting costs and hiring to turn around performance. rice field.

Credit Suisse last month reported its biggest annual loss since the global financial crisis in 2008 after distraught customers withdrew billions of dollars from its banks and warned of further “substantial” losses this year. .

($1 = 0.9357 Swiss Francs)

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