Credit Suisse Says It's Evaluating All Options for Bank

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Credit Suisse Group AG is evaluating all its options before it announces a new strategy on Oct. 21, the bank said, amid growing speculation that it plans to sell shares to raise capital.

The bank’s shares fell 3.6 percent in Zurich trading on Thursday after the Financial Times reported it was preparing a “substantial” equity issue. Switzerland’s second largest bank would use the fresh funds to absorb losses caused by a planned reorganization, the newspaper reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

“We have noted today’s media speculation regarding our capital position and our Oct. 21, 2015 investor day,” the bank said after the market closed. “We are conducting a thorough assessment of Credit Suisse’s strategy, evaluating all options for the group, its businesses and its capital usage and requirements.”

The people cited by the British newspaper pointed to a survey of investors by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. analysts where 91 percent of respondents expected the bank to raise at least 5 billion Swiss francs ($5.2 billion).

Chief Executive Officer Tidjane Thiam, who replaced Brady Dougan in July, is under pressure to make deeper cuts to its investment bank and allocate more resources to wealth management. Thiam, 53, told staff in a memo on his first day on the job that he would be “ruthlessly selective” about where the bank allocates its resources.

The CEO, who joined from Prudential Plc, has pledged to set out a strategy to make the business “generate excess capital.” Swiss capital requirements are among the toughest in the world, with the government looking to raise the leverage ratio showing how much capital a bank holds in the form of debt.

(Updates with details of earlier reports on Credit Suisse starting in the second paragraph.)
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