Credit Suisse Group on Tuesday announced an estimated charge of 4.4 billion Swiss francs ($4.7 billion) from its relationship with Archegos Capital Management LP, suspended a share buyback programme and cut its proposed dividend.
Following are reactions to the development.
MICHAEL KUNZ, ANALYST AT ZUERCHER KANTONALBANK
“An individual case has ruined the otherwise successful work of the bank as a whole in the first quarter. At least – in our opinion – personnel consequences have now been taken. The main damage, however, has been inflicted on shareholders, who have to make do with a lower dividend and a suspended share buyback. In view of the bank’s vulnerability to risk….it does not seem appropriate to us to recommend bets on the securities of CS Group.”
ANDREAS VENDITTI, ANALYST AT BANK VONTOBEL
“CHF 4.4 bn Archegos charges are at the higher end of the range. However, the 1Q21 pre-tax loss is limited to CHF 0.9 bn thanks to very strong operating results. While the short-term impact seems less severe than feared, the full consequences from the reputational loss will only be visible over time.
“CEO Gottstein is quoted saying “serious lessons will be learned”. In addition to the Executive Board changes, we look forward to hearing about the “broader consequences” of the Board’s investigations.”
JASON TEH, CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER, VERTIUM ASSET MANAGEMENT, SYDNEY:
“After any sort of blow-up there’s always tighter control. I’m pretty sure at Credit Suisse, and even Nomura, they won’t be keen to let clients lever up five-to-one so easily.
“It’s a lot of money…Basically they’ve lost earnings and they won’t get it back until they find another way to get it.”
OMKAR JOSHI, PORTFOLIO MANAGER, OPAL CAPITAL MANAGEMENT, SYDNEY:
“I know they’ve got to change management and that’s just the thing you’ve got to do in any company when something like this happens, but I’m not sure that really changes things.
“They’ve probably moved too slow and they could’ve done what Goldman or Morgan Stanley did and moved quicker … but the reality is that someone was going to lose money in the whole thing. At the end of the day, competition forces margin requirements amongst all prime brokers to be similar.”