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Rating Action:

MOODY'S CHANGES BACK TO STABLE FROM NEGATIVE THE OUTLOOK FOR DEUTSCHE BANK'S LONG-TERM RATINGS (SENIOR AT Aa3); ALSO LOWERS THE BANK'S FINANCIAL STRENGTH RATING TO B- FROM B, WITH STABLE OUTLOOK AS WELL

10 Nov 2003
MOODY'S CHANGES BACK TO STABLE FROM NEGATIVE THE OUTLOOK FOR DEUTSCHE BANK'S LONG-TERM RATINGS (SENIOR AT Aa3); ALSO LOWERS THE BANK'S FINANCIAL STRENGTH RATING TO B- FROM B, WITH STABLE OUTLOOK AS WELL

Frankfurt, November 10, 2003 -- Moody's Investors Service changed to stable from negative the outlook for Deutsche Bank's long-term ratings (senior at Aa3). The negative outlook has been in place since September 2002, and its change back to stable recognizes Deutsche Bank's sustainable position in Germany as a premier universal bank and also globally in selected activities, its breadth of business, consistently high brand value, sophisticated and efficient risk management, as well as its notable progress during its business and balance-sheet restructuring over the last 18 months. These measures include cutting costs, selling off less profitable or non-core businesses (insurance, passive management, parts of transaction banking) and a strategic refocusing on the core businesses.

Moody's noted that the stable outlook anchors Deutsche Bank firmly in the Aa rating range and reflects its view that the remaining current downside risks are compatible with this rating range.

At the same time, Moody's lowered Deutsche Bank's financial strength rating (FSR) to B- from B, with a stable outlook. The FSR adjustment reflects Moody's belief that, even as the restructuring of the group has yielded positive results, Deutsche Bank's revenue mix is likely to preserve structurally a comparatively higher element of inherent volatility than other Aa-rated global banks, given the relatively more reduced stream of revenues generated by domestic retail financial services. This is due to the fact that Deutsche Bank remains primarily a wholesale and investment bank, and therefore, however profitable it may be at times, its risk-return profile should continue to display some inherent volatility.

Moody's commented that in recent years, while building its franchise as a global investment bank, progress in the domestic retail and business banking market was less clear and Deutsche Bank's financial strength had been upheld by the existence of hidden reserves. Due to the slump in the equity markets and years of divestments, Deutsche Bank's reserves in industrial holdings have gradually disappeared. That said, Deutsche Bank's operations are supported by a reassuring level of economic capitalisation and are steered with sophisticated and efficient risk management. Moody's added that it expects the group to strengthen further in the future its capacity to generate excess economic capital from recurring earnings, but that the highly competitive domestic retail market in Germany, along with the fragmented structure of the country's banking system, should continue to make this goal more challenging to achieve.

The rating agency also added that the next phase of Deutsche Bank's transformation process -- focused mainly on leveraging further its existing customer base under strict cost and risk discipline -- should help to further align Deutsche Bank's risk-return profile with its position in the domestic and global markets. This is not likely to be an easy process, however, in view of the highly fragmented structure of the German banking market and competitive pressures from the other private banks, foreign banks, and especially savings and co-operative banks.

Deutsche Bank AG, headquartered in Frankfurt, is Germany's largest bank with total assets of EURO 864 billion as of September 30 2003.

London
Samuel S. Theodore
Managing Director
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456 SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Frankfurt
Michael Dawson-Kropf
VP - Senior Credit Officer
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Deutschland GmbH
JOURNALISTS: 33 1 53 43 93 78 SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

No Related Data.
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