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Revenues and returns fall as Credit Suisse cuts risks

The Swiss bank claims a resilient performance lies beneath the meagre returns after de-risking post-Archegos and Greensill, but big questions remain.

Credit Suisse chief executive Thomas Gottstein said the first half of the year was “incredibly challenging”. Photo: Reuters

Resilience. That was the key message Credit Suisse wanted investors and analysts to take away from Thursday’s second-quarter earnings call, which was rather overshadowed by the publication of the independent report into the extraordinary risk management failures around Archegos.

“Our investment bank was resilient in the face of a more conservative approach to risk and a less favourable trading environment,” chief executive Thomas Gottstein told investors and analysts, while characterizing the first half of the year as “incredibly challenging”.

The bank is still dealing with the fallout from Greensill, which could yet take several quarters to resolve owing to delays in pressing insurance claims.

Apac is absolutely core to Credit Suisse’s growth strategy
Thomas Gottstein, Credit Suisse

Reported net revenues at the investment bank were 41% lower in the quarter just ended than in the second quarter of 2020, thanks to another $600 million loss on Archegos, a hefty reduction in the prime services businesses and lower volatility and client activity in macro rates, emerging markets and credit, which led to a 33% fall in fixed income sales and trading revenues.


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