The bank is working to shift its focus away from risky trading in its investment banking division toward its wealth management operations. In 2012, the bank announced it would implement 10,000 job cuts as part of a major cost-cutting overhaul.
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The bank will pay out the special dividend to shareholders providing it meets Basel requirements of a buffer to help the bank withstand economic shocks of 13 percent of its capital -- which it has already achieved, It has also achieved a ratio of 10 percent when applying its own stress tests. The current stress test ratio sits at 9.9 percent but Ermotti said he is confident the bank can meet the 10 percent mark this year.
Meeting both pre-conditions for the payout will mean the bank will be able to payout 50 percent of its profit to shareholders.
Ermotti said the bank delivered "solid" results, despite the challenging trading environment. He added that every quarter "something new pops up," pointing to the Ukraine crisis.
"Unfortunately our outlook in the last few quarters has proven to be correct and I am saying unfortunately I would have preferred to have a better environment," he told CNBC.
"I think there is a level of complacency in financial markets, clients are still very risk adverse."