Credit Suisse has found no evidence of foreign exchange market manipulation and malpractice, its chairman has said in an interview with a Swiss newspaper, shortly after Swiss financial watchdogs, FINMA and the Swiss Competition Commission, announced inquiries into this issue.
[tag|Credit Suisse|]Credit Suisse[/tag] has found no evidence of foreign exchange market manipulation and malpractice, its chairman has said in an interview with a Swiss newspaper, shortly after Swiss financial watchdogs, FINMA and the Swiss Competition Commission, announced inquiries into this issue.
Switzerland's financial markets regulator said this month that it is investigating several Swiss institutions over possible manipulation in the $5 trillion-a-day foreign exchange market. The announcement came shortly after UK authorities launched an investigation into the alleged manipulation of foreign exchange rates.
"But so far we have found no indication of any misconduct. What's more, it is still far from clear what exactly is being investigated. Particularly as the foreign exchange market is the most liquid market of all, and is accordingly difficult to influence," Urs Rohner told NZZ am Sonntag.
"It's normal for us to receive inquiries from certain authorities when major investigations of this kind are underway, just like other banks. All of this is standard procedure, and the same thing occurred in the LIBOR investigation too," he is reported to have said.
Regulators and investors have grown increasingly concerned about the integrity of financial benchmarks in the wake of the [tag|LIBOR|]LIBOR[/tag] interest rate-rigging scandal.
However, that is also not an issue that Credit Suisse has partaken in, in any way, said Rohner.
“We have not found the slightest evidence to suggest that we were involved in the fixing of LIBOR interest rates,” he said.
Spotlight on Asian private banking
Meanwhile, Rohner also confirmed the retrenchment of Credit Suisse's investment banking business, alongside the renewed focus on it’s private banking services.
“We have scaled down our investment bank massively. The capital split between the investment bank and wealth management is currently somewhere in the region of 60:40. Our aim is to achieve a 50:50 ratio. If need be, we will close down certain business areas,” he is quoted as having said.
Despite having announced the closure of the firm’s private banking operations in several countries, Credit Suisse is looking to expand this part of the bank significantly in order to generate more income.
“I'm convinced that we will end up with an investment bank that can generate pre-tax income of SFr3-4 billion in good years. We can then use these funds to invest in the growth of our other businesses. In the coming years we will be expanding the global wealth management business in particular,” Rohner explained.
The bank said that emerging markets in Asia particularly, would be its focus for future growth.