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Finance in the new world order

Daniel Bouton of Société Générale, Baudouin Prot of BNP Paribas, Walter Rothensteiner of Raiffeisen Zentralbank and Alfredo Sáenz of Santander speak about the challenges in the new financial world order.

Until August 2007, banks gorged on risk and reaped the rewards. In the past six months the new realities of financing have hit hard. Write-downs from the sub-prime debacle were close to $100 billion and counting as 2008 began. Banks were faced with low liquidity, high funding costs and added pressure from shareholders.

In early January, Euromoney asked the heads of four large financial institutions – Daniel Bouton of Société Générale, Baudouin Prot of BNP Paribas, Walter Rothensteiner of Raiffeisen Zentralbank and Alfredo Sáenz of Santander – about the challenges they face in the new financial world order.

Daniel Bouton, chairman, Société Générale

"The cost of liquidity is higher; we shouldn’t, however, look at pre-July 2007 as the illustration of ‘normality’. This is a new environment, which will last, which affects all banks and to which they, as well as their clients, must adapt"
Daniel Bouton, Société Générale

Euromoney: What are the key lessons you have learned from the credit problems and related uncertainties that have beset the financial system since the summer, and how have you changed the way your bank is managed?

Daniel Bouton, chairman, Société Générale: The financial industry has coped thus far with the extreme conditions we have witnessed.

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