Credit Suisse to Move Bankers to Spain in Brexit: Report

Credit Suisse Group AG will move many European investment banking operations to Spain as part of its Brexit planning, the Swiss bank’s head of investment banking in Spain and Portugal, Wenceslao Bunge, said in an interview with Expansion.

The lender requested a Spanish banking license last month that will allow it to create a European hub for investment banking activities in the country, Bunge told the newspaper. He said he expects the Madrid-based investment banking operations will be fully operational around mid-2021.

The decision represents a victory for Madrid as European financial centers jostle to take business away from London after Britain’s decision to leave the European Union ended unrestricted access to its financial markets. Zurich-based peer UBS Group AG has shifted traders, risk and back office teams to Frankfurt, where it already had a large presence in wealth management.

Bloomberg in 2018 reported that Credit Suisse planned to make Madrid its post-Brexit trading hub in the European Union. The application for a banking license will allow Credit Suisse to begin lending from Spain and turn Madrid into a hub for a broader range of investment banking activities.

“Credit Suisse’s priority has always been to ensure that we maintain access to European Union clients and markets regardless of the outcomes of the Brexit process,” a bank spokesman said by email. “Over the last three years, we have added to our existing capabilities in Spain, Germany and Luxembourg to provide this continuity for our clients. London will remain a key part of the bank’s strategy and footprint after the U.K.’s exit from the EU.”

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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