Tuesday, 1 April 2008

UBS Writedowns Total 1/3 of Equity

In a timely reminder that the credit crisis is nowhere over, UBS managed the biggest single writedown of any financial institution writing off $19 billion or the equivalent of 1/3 of their equity. From marketwatch.com:

UBS plans $19 bln write-down, capital injection
Chairman Ospel to resign; first-quarter loss seen around $12 billion

Swiss banking giant UBS on Tuesday revealed a further $19 billion hit from the credit crisis, doubling its write-downs so far, and said it will have to issue around 15 billion Swiss francs ($15.1 billion) in new shares to shore up its capital base.

The latest hit means UBS (UBS) will report a net loss of around 12 billion francs for the first quarter and marks the end of the road for beleaguered Chairman Marcel Ospel, who will step down later in April.

Click on the link for the full story. And just so UBS doesn't feel lonely Deutsche bank chimed in with some losses of their own. Also from marketwatch.com:

Deutsche Bank sees $3.9 billion mark-downs in Q1

Deutsche Bank (DE) said Tuesday that conditions have become significantly more challenging during the last few weeks and it expects first quarter mark-downs of around 2.5 billion euros ($3.9 billion). The mark downs are related to leveraged loans and loan commitments, commercial real estate, and residential mortgage-backed securities (principally Alt-A). Deutsche Bank said that it expects a BIS Tier 1 capital ratio at the end of the first quarter of between 8 and 9%, consistent with the bank's published targets.

Here we go again, it's writedown season. Buckle up for some more fun in April as US financials re-visit the confessional.