Ex-Swiss Finance Minister Justifies Involvement in Credit Suisse's Downfall

Former finance minister Ueli Maurer rejected the idea of temporarily nationalizing Credit Suisse during the Swiss banking crisis.

Maurer defended his stance, stating that managing a globally active, legally embroiled bank would be impractical for the state.

Critics have accused Maurer of a hands-off approach to Credit Suisse's issues and questioned his decision to let the bank be for a year or two.

In June, UBS took over Credit Suisse, forming a Swiss banking and wealth management giant with a substantial $1.6 trillion balance sheet.

Maurer believed there was a chance for Credit Suisse to resolve its problems independently. 

 Placing initial responsibility on management, followed by the board, auditors, regulators, and the Swiss National Bank.

Despite facing criticism, Maurer contended that a bankruptcy for Credit Suisse was unlikely, emphasizing the bank's substantial equity and attracting interest from third parties.

The Crew

UBS's takeover of Credit Suisse was viewed positively by Maurer, who considered it a good deal for the bank.

Maurer expressed a preference for Switzerland to maintain two large banks, but he believed the UBS takeover was the best solution in the given circumstances.

He doubted the viability of keeping Credit Suisse independent given its situation and history.

Maurer retired as finance minister at the end of 2022 and stands by the belief that UBS's acquisition was the optimal resolution for Credit Suisse.