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This is how the media analyze the bank deal

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This is how the media analyze the bank deal

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“Historical scandal” to new “monster bank”: This is how the media around the world reacted to the UBS takeover

The national and international press assessed the takeover of Credit Suisse by UBS very differently. Questions, losers and accusations remain.

The takeover of Credit Suisse by UBS made international headlines. And the media come to different conclusions.


«Historical Scandal»: The “Daily Gazette” is critical in his editorial on Monday. “The federal government, the financial supervisory authority and the national bank let themselves be ripped off by UBS,” writes the newspaper. The new mega bank has the advantages, the taxpayers, customers and employees the disadvantages.

“A big bank is dying”: front page of the “Tages-Anzeiger” on Monday.


For example, the taxpayers vouch for a total of 109 billion francs. This is questionable because the Federal Council, the National Bank and the Financial Market Authority have imposed “no conditions whatsoever” on UBS. And since customers will only be at the mercy of one big bank in the future, competition in the Swiss banking sector will be weakened. The image of Switzerland as a stable financial center has suffered lasting damage. And the CS collapse hit Switzerland in its self-image.

Part of the solution or part of the problem?

For the “Tages-Anzeiger” it is clear: the “too big to fail” rules do not work. They would have to be rewritten and tightened. «The takeover of Credit Suisse will make the new UBS a real colossus. Everything that went wrong at Credit Suisse can – to an even greater extent – ​​also happen at the new mega bank.”

The newspaper writes of the “most important bank merger in Europe since the financial crisis 15 years ago”. «Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung» (FAZ). After that, the banks “only wanted to be part of the solution”, the German newspaper analyzed in a comment entitled “Part of the problem” that was published at the same time.

But: «It turned out differently. How big the damage will be is not yet foreseeable.”, so the verdict from the German financial metropolis. The FAZ is particularly harsh in court with the local banking supervisory authority Finma: “The supervisors in Switzerland must be detained in any case.”

SRF: “End of an Epoch”

Radio SRF even talks about the “end of an era” on Monday in the program “Heute Morgen”. However, this takeover must be seen in a larger context: 30 years ago, the Swiss banks expanded more and more into the USA, the business with fast money in investment banking was too tempting.

But: “First UBS failed and now CS”, SRF concludes in the analysis. “The Swiss banks must now focus on what they can do: the classic banking business, managing assets and granting loans to companies.”

Switzerland wakes up with “Monster-Bank UBS”.

“The federal government and the national bank save Credit Suisse,” headlines the NZZ.


“A zombie is gone, but a monster is born”: That’s the headline “The New Zurich Times” your comment. The new UBS is therefore a “monster” because its new balance sheet total will be almost twice as large as Swiss economic output. It is therefore just too big to let it go under. “Too big to fail” is back with full force.

For the NZZ it is certain that the current decisions have “strong collateral damage” that will have an after-effect. “Because if certain companies cannot go bankrupt, it undermines support for capitalism.” The newspaper speaks of a black day for the financial center, for many CS employees and for confidence in the market economy.

Business press at odds

Analyze it similarly «Handelsblatt» the decision, but comes to a completely different conclusion: “At the end of the merger, there could be a fragile monster,” analyzes the German business and financial newspaper. “Full nationalization would probably have been better.” Because, so the simple conclusion from Düsseldorf: “A major merger like the now announced takeover of Credit Suisse by the larger rival UBS will probably increase the problem.”

And for the Reuters agency, it is “not yet clear” whether the deal will be enough to restore confidence in lenders around the world. Bloomberg meanwhile, emphasizes exactly this intention of the “deal engineered by the government”. In addition to the bank bailout, “the spreading crisis of confidence on the global financial markets” should be contained.

“Blick”: Almost only losers remain

“Lights out!”: The headline in “Blick”.


The «Blick» meanwhile simply has many unanswered questions. For example, why didn’t the authorities intervene much earlier? Or why there were no alarm signals from all the other Swiss banks. They could have sensed that the big competitor was getting worse and worse. “CS customers were happy to take them, but didn’t give enough thought to the reputation of the financial center.” Or also why it first took pressure from foreign supervisory authorities and finance ministries for Switzerland to come up with an emergency solution almost overnight.

The questions need to be answered urgently. “Because almost only losers are left behind,” writes the “Blick”. He thinks about the shareholders, “who just get a crumb for their shares”. Or the customers and employees. And first and foremost the Swiss financial center. Overnight it had become a “financial square” – “with just one big bank that towers over everything like a colossus”.

Romandy: A slap in the face

«24 Heures»: «Credit Suisse is dying to save the system»

«24 Heures»: «Credit Suisse is dying to save the system»


Talk entitled “Credit Suisse is dying to save the system”. “24 hours” and “Tribune de Genève” in the commentary even of an “acceptance of shame” and an “unworthy end”. This is because the second largest bank in Switzerland was liquidated for three billion dollars without the consent of shareholders, although Credit Suisse is probably worth much more.

Switzerland finds itself smaller today and is returning to some form of banking normality. “This is not the end of the story, but a slap in the face of their pride,” according to the French-speaking Swiss newspaper.

“Credit Suisse couldn’t fall!” headlines «Le Temps» the day after.


Trying to put the unthinkable into words the day after “The weather”: “The bank founded by Alfred Escher in 1856 could not and should not go under,” writes the French-speaking Swiss daily. Nevertheless, the Federal Council, the National Bank and the banking supervisory authority could only have watched over the weekend as Credit Suisse threatened to die. Conclusion of “Le Temps”: “Trust is a true dictator of the financial markets.”

The fact that no attempt was made to separate the Swiss business from the Credit Suisse group, as provided for in the “too big to fail” law, is a “big, missed opportunity”. Because that’s what minority and small shareholders had been demanding for a long time, according to “Le Temps”.

Strengthen supervision of banks?

Also the British «Economist» regrets the “significant but unfortunate merger” of the two major Swiss banks. “After a weekend of haggling and years of creeping despair,” an “international banking institution” is now simply “dead.”

“The case of Credit Suisse shows that more work is needed in the area of ​​banking risks,” the overwrites «Financial Times» (FT) their analysis. It is important that after the crisis rescue, the right lessons are drawn from the case. In the current case, “an embarrassing statement from the largest shareholder” was enough for the bank to die.

Accordingly, the US financial journal comes to the conclusion in the text that the Swiss authorities “didn’t really have a choice” but to intervene harshly. But: “Ultimately, the customers of Credit Suisse decided their own fate, not the investors,” says the FT. This by collecting their money from the bank in droves.

“There has never been a lack of megalomania”

For the “Southgerman newspaper” “Misere” tells a lot about Switzerland and its banks. CS stands for an inglorious chapter in Swiss history, for megalomania and a nefarious business model that has always placed its own profit above moral credibility and has often taken the entire country hostage.

The Swiss state is now getting ready again, just in case. According to the SZ, not even competition law reasons should stand in the way of the “Swiss bank merger of the century”. “In the end, the realization remains: there has never been a lack of megalomania.”

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