Credit Suisse Rallies as Thiam Rides Return of Volatility

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The bank said it will pay its first all-cash dividend in four years, a move it adopted last year following a pay snafu which saw Credit Suisse (CS) back down amid massive pressure from large institutional investors.

"2017 was a crucial year of delivery in our three-year restructuring plan, after 2016, which was a year of deep and radical reorganisation and restructuring", said chief executive Tidjane Thiam (left). Its stock rose 3% on Wednesday and has outperformed its crosstown.

The Swiss bank Credit Suisse is expected to report a third consecutive annual loss, mainly due to write off of 2.3 billion CHF (2.45 billion USD) related with the United States tax reform. Laurent Mignon, the CEO of France's Natixis SA, said in an interview Wednesday that his bank has seen "good activity" since the start of the year.

The bank's private banking arm took in 37.2 billion francs in fresh money from clients - a key indicator of future revenue. The main trading unit, a division called global markets that's run by Brian Chin, posted a bigger loss before tax than analysts had estimated.

The company warned in the prospectus that the product has "zero long-term value", he said.

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Credit Suisse's common equity Tier 1 capital ratio, assuming full implementation of Basel rules, was 12.8 percent at the end of December, down from 13.2 percent at the end of the third quarter.

It reported a net loss of 983 million Swiss francs ($1.05 billion) for the year and said that it paid 2.74 billion Swiss francs in income tax expenses, primarily related to the re-assessment of deferred taxes resulting from the US tax changes. Yet many of Credit Suisse's markets businesses went on to struggle throughout 2017 as volatility declined.

Fourth-quarter revenue was essentially flat at 5.19 billion francs, while pre-tax profit came in at 141 million francs, reversing a pre-tax loss of more than 2.2 billion francs a year earlier.

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