Swiss tsunami rips through global markets: FTSE 100 wipeout noticeable


Last week’s revelations that Credit Suisse, the second largest bank in Switzerland which is also a global market-maker at Tier 1 interbank level, has got into financial dire straits has had more than an effect on the local banking sector.

As is to be expected, the demise of such as key financial institution has had a major impact on many other markets internationally, one of which is the FTSE 100 index in London.

By Thursday last week, just days after the possibility of a total demise of Credit Suisse had become a real concern, £76 billion was wiped off the value of the index which contains London’s top 100 stock in blue-chip companies.

Over the past five days, the FTSE 100 index has lost 5.8% in value, and is now at its lowest point in over a month, down some 9.8% over the past 30 days.

This morning, as the markets open in London for the first time this week, it was clear that the collapse of Credit Suisse has taken its toll across a whole range of asset classes and company stocks.

One of the reasons for a further tumble in value this morning is that a possible deal between UBS, another Swiss banking giant, and Credit Suisse has not been successful, meaning that even for $1, Credit Suisse was unsaleable.

Bank stocks across the world have depreciated due to the collapse of yet another Tier 1 bank, which has gone the same way as many banks over the past 15 years despite all of the regulatory overhauls and possible lessons learned from the 2008/2009 financial crisis in which a whole host of large commercial banks in Europe and North America collapsed, with some disappearing forever after hundreds of years in business, and some being nationalised at the expense of the taxpayer.

Confidence, therefore is low and added to that are fall-out factors such as the total write-off of US$17 billion worth of Credit Suisse bonds as part of the proposed UBS deal sparked concern about similar debt and sent banking shares down further.

Lloyds Banking Group PLC, HSBC, Standard Chartered and NatWest shares dropped in value by 3.3%. 2.8%, 7.2% and 3.3% respectively and the FTSE 100 is now languishing at 7.335.

It certainly appears that the 8,000 points that analysts were looking at a few weeks ago is now an unfulfilled and distant memory.

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