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Tuesday 07th of October 2008
July 1, 2008

Management overhaul at UBS


by Kay Murchie
”Management

Swiss investment bank, UBS, has announced the resignation of 4 of its 12 board members as it attempts to recover from losses linked to the credit crunch.

The overhaul sees directors Stephan Haeringer, Rolf Meyer, Peter Spuhler and Lawrence Weinbach step down in October. The banking giant said nominations for their replacements will be announced well before the shareholder meeting on October 2nd.

The bank, which has been the biggest European casualty of the credit crunch, has seen its reputation for financial prudence damaged by the sub-prime mortgage collapse which saw it make losses of over £18.6 billion ($37 billion).

However, the announcement of the resignations failed to spark excitement among investors as shares fell by 6.3% - a decade-low.

The bank is in the process of slashing 5,500 jobs and speculation is mounting that it will announce further write-downs for the second quarter.

Chairman, Peter Kurer, said they have made progress with the clear separation of the duties between the board and executive management and the abolition of the chairman’s office.

Due to the Governance and Nominating Committee, much has been achieved in a very short time. Mr Kurer went on to say that the bank has the foundations for the energetic and rigorous execution of our mandate.

Former chief executive of UBS, Luqman Arnold, who runs the UK-based investment fund Olivant, has been critical of Peter Kurer.

Mr Arnold, who is a key shareholder in UBS, said Mr Kurer has no banking, strategic, credit or market risk experience, all skills which are of critical importance given the situation in which UBS finds itself.

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