Signage for Credit Suisse Group AG outside a building, which houses the company’s branch, in Tokyo, Japan, on Monday, March 20, 2023. UBS Group AG agreed to buy Credit Suisse Group in a historic, government-brokered deal aimed at containing a crisis of confidence that had started to spread across global financial markets.

Kosuke Okahara | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Saudi National Bank is nursing major losses in the wake of Credit Suisse’s failure after a deal was reached for UBS to buy the embattled Swiss lender for $3.2 billion.

Saudi National Bank — Credit Suisse’s largest shareholder — confirmed to CNBC Monday that it had been hit with a loss of around 80% on its investment.

The Riyadh-based bank holds a 9.9% stake in Credit Suisse, having invested 1.4 billion Swiss francs ($1.5 billion) in the 167-year-old Swiss lender in November of last year, at 3.82 Swiss francs per share.

Under the terms of the rescue deal, UBS is paying Credit Suisse shareholders 0.76 Swiss francs per share.

The significant discount comes as regulators try to shore up the global banking system. The scramble for a rescue follows a tumultuous few weeks which saw the collapses of U.S.-based Silicon Valley Bank and First Republic bank as well as major stock price downturns across the banking sector internationally.

Shares of UBS, Switzerland’s largest bank, traded down 10.5% at 9:28 a.m. London time, while Europe’s banking sector was around 4% lower. Credit Suisse was down a whopping 62%.

The Saudi National Bank (SNB) headquarters beyond the King Abdullah Financial District Conference Center in the King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2022.

Bloomberg | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Despite the loss, Saudi National Bank says its broader strategy remains unchanged. Shares of the lender were up 0.58% on Monday at 9:20 a.m. London time.

“As at December 2022, SNB’s investment in Credit Suisse constituted less than 0.5% of SNB’s total Assets, and c. 1.7% of SNB’s investments portfolio,” the Saudi National Bank said in a statement.

It said there was “nil impact on profitability” from a “regulatory capital perspective.”

“Changes in the valuation of SNB’s investment in Credit Suisse have no impact on SNB’s growth plans and forward looking 2023 guidance,” it added.


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