UBS

  • 14 Mar 2014 at 4:11 PM

UBS Tried, And Failed, To Rig Hong Kong Interest Rate

…which elicited an utterly delightful response from the bank that sounds a lot like something the parents of a juvenile delinquent would say if it came out that their kid tried to burn down a building but was too high to light the match. Read more »

  • 27 Feb 2014 at 5:18 PM
  • Banks

Don’t Call Them A Foreign-Exchange Powerhouse

UBS, like JPMorgan Chase and Morgan Stanley before it, has struck upon the idea that if it’s not in the Euromoney FX league tables, regulators won’t notice all of the (allegedly) illegal currency-related things it does. Read more »

Back in November, UBS worked out a prettay, prettay, prettay sweet deal for itself re: Libor manipulation. Like many another bank, UBS’s employees had their way with London Interbank Offered Rate. Unlike many other bank, which faced stiff penalties for doing so, the Swiss struck an immunity deal with the EU wherein it paid a relatively small fine and then, in exchange for cooperating with authorities and “turning over information about other banks,” found itself in the clear. Anyway, that worked out so well for UBS last time that it’s decided to take the same approach with a new rate-rigging investigation, and save itself a coupla bucks. Read more »

“Life is hard enough, and I think this constant lecturing on ethics and on integrity by many stakeholders is probably the most frustrating part of the equation. Because I don’t think there are many people who are perfect,” Mr. Ermotti said in an interview at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “We are far from being perfect…but it’s not going to be very helpful to be constantly bashing banks.” [...] Mr. Ermotti, a Swiss native who has spent his entire career in the banking industry, said he is growing frustrated with what he sees as some regulators, politicians, shareholders, clients, journalists and rival banks holding UBS to a higher standard than they hold themselves. “When I look around, I don’t think there are many banks that can come to us and say they are the example that should be followed,” he said. Speaking of a broader group of industry “stakeholders,” including regulators and politicians, Mr. Ermotti said: “None of them can be overly critical.” [WSJ]

  • 13 Jan 2014 at 4:31 PM

Bonus Watch ’14: Everyone

Pay predictions for Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, RBS, UBS. Read more »

UBS chairman Axel Weber has hinted he may not stay at the Swiss bank as long as originally expected, in a newspaper interview linking his future with the lender’s ability to meet stricter regulation as well as to restructure by end-2015. “My work here is done when the bank is prepared for the new regulatory requirements and we have successfully implemented our strategy,” Weber told German weekly Die Zeit, in an advance print made available on Wednesday. The Swiss bank aims to hit higher capital requirements by the end of 2014, and said two years ago it plans to fire 10,000 staff and largely wind down its fixed income business by 2015. Weber’s comments represent a subtle shift for the 56-year-old former head of Germany’s central bank, who responded to criticism of his 4 million Swiss franc ($4.50 million) signing-on fee in 2012 in part by saying he was looking to stay with UBS roughly 10 years. [Reuters]

Raoul Weil, the former head of UBS AG’s global wealth management business accused of conspiring to help Americans evade taxes, was ordered to post bail of $10.5 million before trial, according to a court filing. Weil, 54, appeared today in federal court in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, for the first time since he was indicted in October 2008 and declared a fugitive. U.S. Magistrate Judge Patrick Hunt said Weil must post a $9 million personal surety bond with a cash deposit of $4 million, as well as a $1 million corporate surety bond and a $500,000 personal surety bond, according to minutes of the hearing. Weil’s lawyer has said he is innocent. He is the highest-ranking banker among about 100 people charged since 2008 by the U.S. in a crackdown on offshore tax evasion. About three dozen foreign bankers, lawyers and advisers were charged. Tax lawyers not involved in the case said they expect Weil to plead guilty, cooperate with prosecutors, and seek leniency at sentencing. “There’s a good chance he’ll be ready to cooperate, and he’ll be throwing his people under the bus,” said attorney Edward Robbins of Hochman, Salkin, Rettig, Toscher & Perez in Beverly Hills, California. “He knows where all the dead bodies are. To the extent that the government missed any, he can tell them where they are.” [Bloomberg]