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New management for Credit Suisse First Boston

Allan Wheat is out of the picture at Credit Suisse First Boston

(Keystone Archive)

For the second time in as many days, a major Swiss bank has announced a top management change. Allan D. Wheat, CEO of Credit Suisse First Boston (CSFB) is handing over the reins to John Mack, former head of Morgan Stanley Dean Witter.

Wheat will be leaving his job immediately "to pursue other interests", according to a Credit Suisse Group statement on Thursday. The former CEO had held positions at the group's investment branch for two decades, overseeing the recent merger with Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette.

Correspondents point out that Mack is taking over a firm that is suffering from declining revenue and a United States federal investigation into whether its sale of shares of initial public offerings during the dot-com boom broke US securities laws.

The Credit Suisse group chairman and chief executive, Lukas Mühlemann, last month called for tighter controls at CSFB.

Wheat's departure comes ahead of organisational changes at Credit Suisse. The group will be streamlined into two business units at the beginning of next year.

Mack will head up CFSB, which will be combined with Credit Suisse's asset management business. The other unit, Credit Suisse Financial Services, will merge the private banking and financial services.

Thomas Wellauer has been chosen to manage this unit, and is seen as the successor to Oswald Grübel. Grübel, who is retiring, has been the CEO of Credit Suisse Private Banking for the last three years.

On Wednesday, UBS, Switzerland's biggest bank, announced the departure of Pierre de Weck, CEO of UBS Capital. De Weck was one of the last high-level representatives of the Union Bank of Switzerland after its merger with the Swiss Banking Corporation.

The banking group has also postponed the planned spin-off of UBS Capital, its private equity sector. De Weck is believed to have been a proponent of a more aggressive investment strategy, despite losses earlier this year.

swissinfo with agencies


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