Saudi National Bank says panic over Credit Suisse is ‘unwarranted’

FAN Editor

Panic over Credit Suisse is 'unwarranted,' Saudi National Bank chairman says

Credit Suisse‘s largest shareholder Saudi National Bank said the market turmoil in shares of the Swiss lender was “unwarranted.”

“If you look at how the entire banking sector has dropped, unfortunately, a lot of people were just looking for excuses,” Saudi National Bank chairman Ammar Al Khudairy told CNBC’s Hadley Gamble on Thursday.

“It’s panic, a little bit of panic. I believe completely unwarranted, whether it be for Credit Suisse or for the entire market,” he said on CNBC’s “Capital Connection.”

His comments come hours after Credit Suisse announced that it is taking “decisive action” to borrow up to 50 billion Swiss francs ($53.68 billion). The lender’s shares plunged Wednesday after a report that the Saudi bank said it could not provide Credit Suisse with any further financial assistance.

He added that the recent fallout of the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank was different from the 2008 financial crisis, saying that steps taken by U.S. regulators to protect depositors have contained further fears of contagion.

“We did have a failure last week, but that’s nowhere near, nothing to do with what we saw in 2008. This is just one isolated incident, the regulators have cut off any possibilities of a spillover,” he said.

Message has ‘not changed’

The chairman of Saudi National Bank told CNBC that Credit Suisse has not asked for financial assistance.

“There has been no discussions with Credit Suisse about providing assistance,” he said.

“I don’t know where the word ‘assistance’ came from, there has been no discussions whatsoever since October,” he said.

Saudi National Bank chairman: There has been no discussion on providing assistance to Credit Suisse

He reiterated that the bank will not take its stake beyond the current 9.9%.

“The message has not changed, it’s the same since October,” he said. “Even if we desired to, there are too many complications from a regulatory and compliance point of view,” he said.

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