Credit Suisse will not suffer any major losses from its exposure to the oil and gas industry, the bank’s chairman Urs Rohner told Swiss broadcaster SRF as quoted by Reuters.
“Our oil and gas exposure is possibly a little bit bigger than other European banks,” Rohner said, adding “But seen in total, it is relatively small. That’s not something where I believe there’s a big reason to worry.”
Just last Friday, Credit Suisse oil analyst Bill Featherstone wrote in a note that the oil and gas industry may have passed the worst of the crisis and could look forward to a recovery, albeit a long one.
In the last few years, according to Reuters, the second-largest Swiss bank has been actively seeking ties with the oil and gas industry. But that was when prices were on the rise. Now, things may change.
Last week, Bloomberg reported that Credit Suisse was working on a review of a segment of its lending business that focuses on high net-worth clients. According to the report, one of the highlights of the review would be lending to clients with exposure to the oil and gas industry, along with the shipping industry: three of the most vulnerable industries right now.
The Swiss bank booked a loss from bad loans and asset value declines of $1 billion over the first quarter of the year.
Credit Suisse is not the only one reviewing its business with the oil and gas industry. Many U.S. banks are reconsidering their generosity to the heavily indebted shale oil sector now that oil’s fundamentals are not as great as they were when the debt was taken on. International banks, for their part, are beginning to turn away from oil—tentatively, to be fair—and towards renewables, under pressure from governments, investors, and the rising tide of environmental activism.