Swiss National Bank says it would support credit Suisse if necessary


The Swiss National Bank (SNB) and the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority released a joint statement on March 15 on the stability of the Swiss banking system and Credit Suisse (CS). The problems of “certain banks in the USA” do not pose a risk for the Swiss financial system, they wrote.

The statement was reportedly produced at the request of CS. The regulators said Credit Suisse meets all capital and liquidity requirements, but “if necessary, the SNB will provide CS with liquidity.” However, CS still “meets the capital and liquidity requirements imposed on systemically important banks.” The statement acknowledges that CS has been “affected by market reactions in recent days.”

On March 14, CS Group CEO Ulrich Körner confirmed that the bank is conservatively positioned against interest rate risks. That day, the bank admitted “material weakness in our internal control over financial reporting” after its 2022 performance was the worst since the 2008 global financial crisis.

The SBN statement comes as CS shares fell precipitously at the start of trading on March 15, losing up to 30%, and had been temporarily halted during a heavy sell-off. Trading was halted for several other European banks at the same time. 

Saudi National Bank chair Ammar Al Khudairy said on the morning of March 15 the Saudi central bank would “absolutely not” provide support for CS. That bank is the largest CS shareholder with 9.8% of its stock. 

European Central Bank officials have contacted banks they supervise to ask about their CS exposure, and the French finance minister would call his Swiss colleague to discuss the developments at CS. A U.S. Treasury official told the news service that it was monitoring the bank’s situation.