Banking: European banks go direct to São Paulo
New York no longer holds the key to success in Latin America for some European banks.
"Unlike many of our US peers, our earnings are not just focused in the US"
As 2008 unfolds there is a growing interest in placing leading Latin American bankers in the region rather than in New York. "Unlike many of our US peers, our earnings are not just focused in the US. I think this makes us more willing and able to devolve power from New York and empower Latin American heads into the region," says Todd Steinberg, head of equities and derivatives for the Americas at BNP Paribas. The head of fixed-income sales and trading for Latin America at BNP Paribas is already based in São Paulo. A more drastic move has been taken by Dresdner Kleinwort, which announced last month that it was closing down its New York debt capital markets business, but for a few sales and trading people, in an attempt to move resources closer to local markets. This decision reflects the German bank’s plans to exit unprofitable businesses, which include the US bond business, and reduce headcount in certain areas.