Awards for Excellence 2011: Best Global wealth manager
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Awards for Excellence 2011: Best Global wealth manager

Swiss bank leads wary clients through uncharted territory.

Awards for Excellence 2011

Best Global wealth manager: Credit Suisse Private Bank

Also nominated: HSBC Wealth Management and Barclays Wealth

The biggest challenge facing high-net-worth clients over the past 12 months has been how best to dip a toe back into the investment markets. And the biggest challenge facing wealth managers globally has been building suitable investment products for these cautious clients, and how best to advise them. It has pushed wealth managers to innovate. After the Hong Kong Monetary Authority liberalized the trading of offshore Chinese renminbi in Hong Kong in July 2010, HSBC Wealth Management, for example, was the first to offer its clients globally CNH-denominated structured products across all asset classes.

But this year it is Credit Suisse Private Bank that wins the title of best global wealth manager. Its chief executive, Walter Berchtold, says clients are in uncharted territory. "Clients are still reluctant to invest in higher-risk products, and are very concerned about wealth preservation and the buying power of their wealth. Cash holdings are so high, and yet the dollar is constantly declining.