"Russian Roulette" - Credit Suisse CEO Admits "EU Banks Not Really Investable"

European banks are in a “very fragile situation” and are “not really investable as a sector" according to Credit Suisse chief executive Tidjane Thiam. Speaking at a conference in London this morning, The FT reports, the CEO of Europe's 'other Deutsche Bank' said "only a fool would try to make a five-year prediction in a world that is so random," wishing John Cryan (DB CEO) well, "I hope that they come out of their current predicament."

"The next nine months are going to be difficult," Thiam began, adding that "risk is everywhere, risk is everything. I trained in maths and physics and all that teaches you is that basically the world is a big random experiment," and Brexit was "like Russian Roulette." Asked specifically about Deutsche Bank, he wished them luck...

“You get extreme movements on the basis of relatively minor piece of news because there’s a lot of uncertainty,” he said, citing “regulatory uncertainty” about future capital requirements and concerns about “potential fines like you’ve seen on Deutsche Bank this week”.


“I think there is also a lot of doubt, a fundamental doubt, is there a viable business model that covers its cost of equity?” Mr Thiam added.


“That’s the big big big question,” he said, describing it as something that “makes banks not really investable as a sector”.


“Deutsche Bank is an old institution, a great institution and I really wish them well, I hope that they come out of their current predicament”. 

For now CS is outperforming...

But looking forward, Thiam was anything but the usual unequivopcally bullish bank CEO Americans are so used to...

"I cannot remember, in my lifetime, so many elections. Politics are going to play a big role. I think you will have spikes in volatility. And then you also have the drift towards populism in the political discourse, which will scare markets. The next six to nine months are going to get choppy."


"I know I don't know. Only a fool would try to make a five-year prediction in a world that is so random. You cannot see the future, that is a futile activity. What you can do is think through how you're going to cope with a range of futures and then you define a risk appetite – which is what probably of death are you comfortable with."


"In life you should only worry about the bad outcomes. If you raise capital and you're wrong, it's ok. If you don't raise capital and you're wrong, you die,"