Interest Rate Roundup

Monday, October 01, 2007

Details on the cost of the credit crisis emerging

Slowly but surely, financial firms are 'fessing up about the cost of the credit crisis. In fact, two major global banks -- UBS AG and Citigroup -- just weighed in with details on their exposure ...

* UBS said it will lose anywhere from 600 million Swiss francs to 800 million Swiss francs ($514 million to $685 million) in the third quarter thanks to the well-publicized mortgage credit problems. It took almost 4 billion francs ($3.43 billion) in writedowns on the value of securities. The head of UBS' investment bank unit is stepping down, while its CFO is retiring. The largest bank in Europe also plans to cut 1,500 jobs.

* Citigroup said Q3 profit will plunge by 60% thanks to widespread write-downs and credit losses. Specifically, Citigroup is taking a $1.4 billion pre-tax write down on commitments to lend money for leveraged buyouts. It also lost about $1.3 billion on subprime loans and leveraged loans it was planning to eventually package into CDOs and CLOs. And it lost $600 million on fixed income trades that went bad. Lastly, ongoing deterioration in consumer credit quality and portfolio growth drove credit losses higher and forced Citigroup to boost its loan loss reserves. The total increase in credit costs: $2.6 billion.

How many more skeletons are waiting to be discovered on Wall Street this earnings season? Only time will tell ...


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