Credit Suisse to exit commodities business

by World Grain Staff
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ZURICH, SWITZERLAND — Credit Suisse Group AG announced on July 22 plans to exit the commodities trading business, following a $779 million net loss for the second quarter, the largest since 2008.

The loss was mainly due to the group’s $2.6 billion settlement with U.S. authorities after admitting it helped clients evade taxes.

The group said exiting commodities trading would further enhance capital and operating efficiencies with $200 million in expense savings, $8 billion in risk-weighted asset reduction and $25 billion in leverage exposure reduction. Credit Suisse cited low volatility and client volumes in its decision to exit.

Global investment banks are pulling back from commodities trading as regulations tighten and revenue slides, news agency Bloomberg said. Deutsche Bank AG said in December that it would exit dedicated energy, agriculture, dry bulk and base metals trading. Barclays Plc said in April it would withdraw from most of its commodities activities. JPMorgan Chase & Co. agreed to sell its physical commodities unit to Mercuria Energy Group Ltd. for $3.5 billion in March. 

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