Former Credit Suisse Group AG Chief Executive Officer Tidjane Thiam said the recent sharp moves in securities linked to Deutsche Bank AG was driven by financial speculators rather than the lender’s fundamentals. “I’ll tell you what’s going on with Deutsche,” Thiam said at the FII Institute’s Priority summit in Miami Beach. “After the euro market closes speculators go and short the CDS; increase the spread on the CDS, then you get articles saying that Deutsche is going bankrupt, and then they go into the ADR market, which is very illiquid, where they take a position and make good money.”
“So you really have to distinguish what is going on in the real economy and those speculative positions taken by people basically aimed at making money,” Thiam said in his first public comments since the near collapse of Credit Suisse sent shockwaves through European banking.
Thiam, who stepped down as Credit Suisse CEO in early 2020, last week wrote an article in the Financial Times saying he was “stunned” by the Zurich-based lender’s mounting woes that led to a state-supported takeover by UBS Group AG.
Speaking in Miami, Thiam said he remained “proud” of his five-year stint running Credit Suisse, which he said was “without major incidents.”Discussing fears of a wider banking crisis, Thiam said he was “quite comfortable” with the state of the banking industry. “I think it’s not fragile,” he said. “One reason I am confident is that the state of the global economy is good.”