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Analysts see Singapore’s long-term faith in UBS unshaken

AFP
2 April 2008

Analysts see Singapore’s long-term faith in UBS unshaken

Synopsis
Switzerland’s UBS on Tuesday revealed an additional 19 billion US dollars in writedowns, making it the bank worst-hit by a crisis that originated in the United States subprime, or higher-risk, mortgage sector.

However the massive new writedowns are unlikely to shake major investor Singapore’s faith in the bank’s long-term potential, analysts said Wednesday.

Leon Perera, group managing director of Spire Research and Consulting in Singapore, believed the latest UBS announcement would not be too troubling for GIC.

He said GIC would review internally the extent to which it anticipated the UBS losses and whether its investment could have been timed to negotiate better terms. “The basis of the decision is still sound,” Perera said.

While GIC would have the capacity to join such a large rights issue, Perera does not expect them to participate because they “wouldn’t want to put too many eggs in one basket”.

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