Credit Suisse buys Morgan Stanley wealth unit

Credit Suisse buying Morgan Stanley wealth management businesses in Europe, Mideast, Africa

Associated Press

GENEVA (AP) -- Credit Suisse Group will buy Morgan Stanley's wealth management businesses in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, but not in Switzerland.

Switzerland's second-largest bank says it is acquiring $13 billion in assets mostly belonging to wealthy people across Europe, but it didn't disclose further details.

Romeo Lacher, head of Credit Suisse's Western Europe private banking, said Wednesday the deal will accelerate "growth momentum" in the wealth management business. He suggested the new employees would be retained.

With one of the world's biggest private banking operations, Credit Suisse has been overhauling its investment banking division and merging its private banking and wealth management arms to cut costs and satisfy regulators.

Last month it said it had returned to profitability in the fourth quarter but was cutting costs more than previously planned.

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