Chillin' out till it needs to be funded
Investment bankers once turned their noses up at “plain vanilla” products. Yet Brady Dougan, Credit Suisse’s chief executive, on Thursday painted a picture of an investment banking future all but stripped of the exotic derivatives and highly leveraged products that dragged it into losses. Henceforth, the Swiss bank will emphasise client flows over proprietary trading, keep shrinking assets and attempt to deploy its capital better. About time. In spite of Mr Dougan’s previous assurances on the bank’s resilience, it must first cut fat. The “accelerated implementation” of its strategy will involve cutting 5,300 staff, mainly in the investment bank, and 1,400 contractors. The investment banking headcount will return to 2005 levels. The chairman, CEO and investment bank’s boss are forsaking their bonuses – but keep their jobs.