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Rating Action:

Moody's affirms Credit Suisse AG's A1 senior unsecured debt and deposit ratings; outlook changed to positive

02 Dec 2019

Baseline Credit Assessment affirmed at baa2

Frankfurt am Main, December 02, 2019 -- Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") today affirmed the Baa2 senior unsecured debt ratings of Credit Suisse Group AG and the A1 long-term senior unsecured debt and deposit ratings of its principal bank subsidiary, Credit Suisse AG. The outlook on these ratings has been changed to positive from stable.

The rating agency further affirmed Credit Suisse AG's baa2 Baseline Credit Assessment (BCA), its baa2 Adjusted BCA and its A1(cr)/P-1(cr) Counterparty Risk Assessment as well as all its other long- and short-term ratings. The senior unsecured debt, issuer as well as deposit ratings of all of Credit Suisse's subsidiaries - where applicable - have also been affirmed.

For a full list of all affected ratings, please refer to the end of this press release.

RATINGS RATIONALE

Affirmation

The affirmation of Credit Suisse's (CS) ratings reflects its solid capital position, the bank's pro-active approach to risk management as well as its superior liquidity position, all of which help mitigate risks inherent in its capital markets activities, including wholesale funding sensitivities. The ratings remain further supported by the stable earnings and lower risk profile of the bank's large global wealth management franchise and well-positioned domestic Swiss banking franchise producing a higher share of recurring revenues post restructuring.

The affirmation also takes account of the bank's integrated business model that will continue to rely on a higher share of capital markets businesses versus most other global investment banks: Moody's estimates that CS's capital market divisions -- Investment Banking and Capital Markets, Global Markets and Asia Pacific Markets -- combined will consume approximately 40% of group risk-weighted assets and leverage exposure. The group's comparatively higher dependence on transaction-driven capital market revenues as well as its relatively high exposure to underwriting of leveraged lending and as high-yield debt transactions, however, has the potential to exert meaningful strain on CS's earnings in a highly adverse market environment.

"In its first year post its restructuring, Credit Suisse has demonstrated earnings resilience in a more challenging macroeconomic environment negatively affecting its primary capital markets activities. However, the bank's structurally reduced cost base has sustainably lowered its break-even point, making it more resilient to external market pressures," said Michael Rohr, Senior Vice President at Moody's. "Credit Suisse's profitability is expected to recover further and be sustained at a level commensurate with higher-rated peers over time, supporting the positive outlook. Following the completion of its restructuring, Moody's now expects sustained capital generation through earnings and maintenance of a strong liquidity position to provide protection to bondholders" added Rohr.

Aside from these fundamental considerations, Moody's assessment of the volume of loss absorbing debt under its Advanced Loss Given Failure (LGF) analysis and of the probability of government support have not changed. Moody's also does not have any particular governance concern for CS, and does not apply any corporate behaviour adjustment to the bank. Nonetheless, corporate governance remains a key credit consideration and will continue to be monitored on an ongoing basis.

Positive outlook

The positive outlook on CS's senior long-term ratings reflects Moody's expectation that CS will be able to defend its improved and more stable profitability on the back of meaningfully lower non-recurring charges, supported by sustained lower funding costs and its structurally lower cost base in its capital markets operations. Moody's further takes account of the progress the firm has made in executing on its restructuring plan, which included a meaningful de-risking of its balance sheet, restoring underlying profitability -- in particular in its capital markets-oriented business units -- as well as the resolution of almost all major outstanding litigation matters.

The positive outlook also reflects the improvement in the bank's liquidity and funding profile, as displayed through a peer-leading liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) and an above-average maturity profile of its more confidence-sensitive market funding, both of which the rating agency expects to be maintained. CS has issued most of its loss-absorbing debt earlier than many peers and the related debt issuances have significantly extended CS's debt maturity profile and lowered its refinancing risk. If maintained, CS's improved ability to manage funding and liquidity needs across the group will increase its resilience to periods of high volatility or funding market dislocation.

WHAT COULD MOVE THE RATINGS UP/DOWN

Upward pressure on CS's ratings could arise if the group (1) were to achieve and defend a sustainable improvement in its profitability metrics around the communicated target levels; (2) maintained its strict risk controls and improved governance principles, in particular in its capital markets-oriented business segments; and (3) managed to keep at least constant the share of revenue and profits generated from its more stable wealth management and universal banking businesses. Any upgrade remains further contingent on the group containing its wholesale funding dependence expressed through Moody's market funds ratio at or below the year-end 2018 level.

Although considered unlikely given the positive outlook, the ratings could be downgraded if CS (1) failed to continuously deliver on the changes implemented to its business model, in particular if it failed to stabilize revenues, thereby not being able to sustain positive operating leverage; (2) were to suffer from a significant control or risk management failure; or (3) materially increased its risk appetite against a more challenging market environment, in particular if it grew higher-risk capital markets businesses. The ratings may also be downgraded in the event of a significant and faster-than-anticipated decline in the Swiss or global economies, or an unexpected and meaningful deterioration in the group's capital or its liquidity and funding profile.

The ratings could further be downgraded should there be a significant and larger-than-anticipated decrease in the bank's existing stock of bail-in-able liabilities. Although regarded highly unlikely at present, this may lead to fewer notches of rating uplift as a result of Moody's Advanced LGF analysis.

LIST OF AFFECTED RATINGS

Issuer: Credit Suisse AG

..Affirmations:

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed A1

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed P-1

....Long-term Bank Deposits, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Short-term Bank Deposits, affirmed P-1

....Long-term Deposit Note/CD Program, affirmed (P)A1

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed A1(cr)

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed P-1(cr)

....Long-term Issuer Rating, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Baseline Credit Assessment, affirmed baa2

....Adjusted Baseline Credit Assessment, affirmed baa2

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Senior Unsecured Shelf, affirmed (P)A1

....Senior Unsecured Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)A1

....Subordinate Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed Baa3

....Subordinate Shelf, affirmed (P)Baa3

....Subordinate Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)Baa3

....Commercial Paper, affirmed P-1

....Other Short Term, affirmed (P)P-1

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

Issuer: Credit Suisse Group AG

..Affirmations:

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed Baa2, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Senior Unsecured Shelf, affirmed (P)Baa2

....Senior Unsecured Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)Baa2

....Subordinate Shelf, affirmed (P)Baa3

....Subordinate Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)Baa3

....Preferred Stock Non-cumulative, affirmed Ba2(hyb)

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

Issuer: Credit Suisse AG (Guernsey) Branch

..Affirmations:

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed A1

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed P-1

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed A1(cr)

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed P-1(cr)

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Senior Unsecured Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)A1

....Other Short Term, affirmed (P)P-1

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

Issuer: Credit Suisse AG (London) Branch

..Affirmations:

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed A1

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed P-1

....Long-term Bank Deposits, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed A1(cr)

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed P-1(cr)

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Senior Unsecured Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)A1

....Subordinate Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed Baa3

....Subordinate Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)Baa3

....Other Short Term, affirmed (P)P-1

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

Issuer: Credit Suisse AG (Nassau) Branch

..Affirmations:

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed A1

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed P-1

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed A1(cr)

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed P-1(cr)

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Senior Unsecured Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)A1

....Subordinate Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)Baa3

....Other Short Term, affirmed (P)P-1

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

Issuer: Credit Suisse AG (New York) Branch

..Affirmations:

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed A1

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed P-1

....Long-term Bank Deposits, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Short-term Bank Deposits, affirmed P-1

....Long-term Deposit Note/CD Program Takedown, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed A1(cr)

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed P-1(cr)

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Senior Unsecured Shelf, affirmed (P)A1

....Senior Unsecured Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)A1

....Subordinate Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed Baa3

....Subordinate Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)Baa3

....Commercial Paper, affirmed P-1

....Other Short Term, affirmed (P)P-1

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

Issuer: Credit Suisse AG (Sydney) Branch

..Affirmations:

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed A1

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed P-1

....Short-term Deposit Note/CD Program, affirmed P-1

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed A1(cr)

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, Affirmed P-1(cr)

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Senior Unsecured Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)A1

....Commercial Paper, affirmed P-1

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

Issuer: Credit Suisse AG (Tokyo) Branch

..Affirmations:

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed A1

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed P-1

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed A1(cr)

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed P-1(cr)

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

Issuer: Credit Suisse (USA) Inc.

..Affirmations:

....Backed Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Backed Senior Unsecured Shelf, affirmed (P)A1

....Backed Senior Unsecured Medium-Term Note Program, affirmed (P)A1

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

Issuer: DLJ Cayman Islands LDC (debt assumed by Credit Suisse International)

..Affirmation:

....Backed Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

..No Outlook assigned

Issuer: Credit Suisse International

..Affirmations:

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed A1

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Ratings, affirmed P-1

....Backed long-term Bank Deposits, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Backed short-term Bank Deposits, affirmed P-1

....Long-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed A1(cr)

....Short-term Counterparty Risk Assessment, affirmed P-1(cr)

....Long-term Issuer Rating, affirmed A1, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

....Backed Senior Unsecured Shelf, affirmed (P)A1

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

Issuer: Credit Suisse Group Finance (US) Inc.

..Affirmation:

....Backed Subordinate Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed Baa3

..No Outlook assigned

Issuer: Credit Suisse Group Funding (Guernsey) Ltd

..Affirmations:

....Backed Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, affirmed Baa2, outlook changed to Positive from Stable

..Outlook Action:

....Outlook changed to Positive from Stable

PRINCIPAL METHODOLOGY

The principal methodology used in these ratings was Banks Methodology published in November 2019. Please see the Rating Methodologies page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.

REGULATORY DISCLOSURES

For ratings issued on a program, series, category/class of debt or security this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series, category/class of debt, security or pursuant to a program for which the ratings are derived exclusively from existing ratings in accordance with Moody's rating practices. For ratings issued on a support provider, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the credit rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular credit rating action for securities that derive their credit ratings from the support provider's credit rating. For provisional ratings, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the provisional rating assigned, and in relation to a definitive rating that may be assigned subsequent to the final issuance of the debt, in each case where the transaction structure and terms have not changed prior to the assignment of the definitive rating in a manner that would have affected the rating. For further information please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page for the respective issuer on www.moodys.com.

For any affected securities or rated entities receiving direct credit support from the primary entity(ies) of this credit rating action, and whose ratings may change as a result of this credit rating action, the associated regulatory disclosures will be those of the guarantor entity. Exceptions to this approach exist for the following disclosures, if applicable to jurisdiction: Ancillary Services, Disclosure to rated entity, Disclosure from rated entity.

Regulatory disclosures contained in this press release apply to the credit rating and, if applicable, the related rating outlook or rating review.

Please see www.moodys.com for any updates on changes to the lead rating analyst and to the Moody's legal entity that has issued the rating.

Please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for additional regulatory disclosures for each credit rating.

Michael Rohr
Senior Vice President
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Deutschland GmbH
An der Welle 5
Frankfurt am Main 60322
Germany
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

Ana Arsov
MD - Financial Institutions
Financial Institutions Group
JOURNALISTS: 1 212 553 0376
Client Service: 1 212 553 1653

Releasing Office:
Moody's Deutschland GmbH
An der Welle 5
Frankfurt am Main 60322
Germany
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

No Related Data.
© 2019 Moody’s Corporation, Moody’s Investors Service, Inc., Moody’s Analytics, Inc. and/or their licensors and affiliates (collectively, “MOODY’S”). All rights reserved.

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