Credit Suisse CEO Thiam: 'Brexit has no impact—yet'

Brexit has no immediate impact: Credit Suisse CEO

Tidjane Thiam, the chief executive of Credit Suisse, which has cut close to 2,000 jobs in London this year, told CNBC that Brexit has so far had "no impact" on its business, but that the bank is "ready to adapt" if it does.

His comments come amid fears of a gradual exodus from the City, London's financial services center, to elsewhere in Europe, when the U.K. leaves the European Union.

Credit Suisse has already cut 1,800 jobs in London this year as it restructures its business and moves some jobs to lower cost countries like India and Poland.

"We have been very cautious, because everybody knows what the uncertainties are – (for example) Brexit – and no-one knows how it is going to play out," Thiam added.

"We have to look for where there is profitable growth and push capital towards those areas ... Our plan has been to fundamentally reduce our footprint in London."

Surprise profit

Credit Suisse reported a surprise profit for the second quarter of 2016 on Thursday.

With net income of 170 million Swiss francs ($172.4 million), it beat expectations for a 192 million Swiss franc loss in a Reuters poll.

The quarterly profit compared to a net loss attributable to shareholders of 302 million Swiss francs in the first quarter of 2016, but represented an 84 percent fall on net profits of just over 1 billion Swiss francs from the same period in 2015.

Even though results were better than forecast, analysts still believe the bank may need to make a fresh appeal for capital next year, as it struggles with challenging markets and increased leverage requirements under new "too big to fail" rules. Last month, the Swiss National Bank said Credit Suisse, along with rival UBS, may need to raise an extra 10 billion Swiss francs in capital to meet new leverage requirements.

"We believe CS (Credit Suisse) will still need to raise another round of capital next year," analysts at Bernstein wrote in a research note.

The Swiss banking giant said it made a group pre-tax income of 199 million Swiss francs in the three months to June 30, an improvement on the pre-tax loss of 484 million Swiss francs reported in the first quarter.

Net revenues for the quarter came in at 5.4 billion Swiss francs, up 6 percent on 5.1 billion Swiss francs in the first quarter, but down 16 percent against 6.5 billion Swiss francs in the same period a year ago.

'Many pressures on banks'

Tidjane Thiam, CEO of Credit Suisse.
Chris Ratcliffe | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Thiam, who took over at Credit Suisse in July last year, said the bank had been able to improve its performance in the second quarter in order to return to profit, despite the volatile environment.

It was helped by significant wealth management asset inflows and a profitable quarter with increased market share at the investment banking and capital markets business.

"There are many pressures on banks, with negative interest rates and uncertainty around regulation particular challenges. Business and capitalism is extremely adaptable, and can adjust to any context, but we need a stable and predictable framework," Thiam told CNBC.

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