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Credit Suisse ploughs on

Brady Dougan reassures sceptics in interview

Credit Suisse will continue to cooperate with the United States authorities in the ongoing tax dispute, although no end to the probe is in sight, CEO Brady Dougan has said in an interview with the Swiss investment magazine Finanz und Wirtschaft.

Dougan said he was confident that once Switzerland’s second-largest bank had finished addressing the problems related to the tax dispute with the US, the bank would generate significant capital with its business model.

Credit Suisse is one of more than a dozen Swiss banks being investigated by the US Department of Justice for helping American customers evade taxes. In the ongoing dispute with the US government, said Brady, Credit Suisse has “delivered hundreds and thousands of documents to the US”.

UBS was the first bank to be investigated, beginning in 2007. In August 2013, Switzerland and the US agreed a non-prosecution deal for banks that handed over information on US dealings. By the end of 2013, 106 Swiss banks had signed on to the programme.

Dougan said he could not predict when the tax dispute would finally be settled, but said he was convinced that “the only path to a solution is one that includes cooperation with the authorities”.

In February, Dougan testified about the bank’s activities before the US Senate. “We provided the results of years of research,” he told Finanz und Wirtschaft. “The idea that we’re telling untruths, or not taking responsibility for our actions, is just plain wrong.” 

Asked why the bank was withdrawing from some markets where it had been active, to the consternation of some employees and clients, Dougan answered: “… we must be absolutely sure that for each country in which we undertake transactions, we know exactly what is allowed there and what is not allowed”.