Keith Mullin is Editor-at-Large of International Financing Review (IFR). An accomplished journalist, editor and market commentator for over 25 years, Keith has covered a range of specialist market segments from debt, equity and loan capital markets to securitisation, financial derivatives, leveraged finance, emerging markets and others. He is the author of two hard-hitting analyses of the investment banking industry – "Global Investment Banks: Trends, Strategies and Performance (2006) and “After the Bailout: Future Directions in Investment Banking” (2009). Based in London, Keith is married with three children. He is Vice President of Save the Children.
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THERE WAS A lot of chatter on the back of UBS’s fourth-quarter and full-year results around whether the strategy adopted by Sergio Ermotti, to scale back fixed-income and push wealth management to the fore with a smaller equities-led investment bank, has wrong-footed the group vis-à-vis its ability to take full advantage of market conditions that prevailed in the fourth quarter as well as potential evolving market conditions.
MAJOR BANK STOCKS have been on a tear since the US election result, up on average around 25% – a whole lot more in many cases. It’s not just US banks but international players too. It’s probably safe to say equity prices have been caught by a wave of investor over-exuberance and the acceleration will settle down over time. But the appreciation does raise some vital questions.
“THE GREATEST MANAGER of any sales and trading organisation in the world … like Bono joining your rock band” was how Cantor Fitzgerald Chairman and CEO Howard Lutnick gushingly described his close friend Anshu Jain joining his racy broker-cum-investment bank as president.