Credit Suisse may have closed its prime services business, but for other banks, prime broking is a still a key driver of revenues. - Even as equities sales and trading revenues fell in the fourth quarter, banks like Citi and JPM said prime services remained robust.
This might be one reason why UBS has picked up Citi's former global head of prime finance after he lost his job at the bank 14 months ago.
Adam Hermann left Citi after five and a half years in November 2020 after falling victim to a round of senior cuts in the bank's equities business. He spent 2021 out of the market according to his LinkedIn profile, but now he's back as a managing director and head of counterparty credit in UBS's investment bank.
Hiring managing directors early in the year can be an expensive business if they're being poached from rivals before bonuses are paid (although this doesn't seem to have dissuaded banks like Jefferies and Deutsche). UBS has therefore taken the opportunity to hire Hermann from the street given that he doesn't have a 2021 bonus to be bought-out; it probably helps, too, that Hermann spent three years at UBS before joining Citi.
Hermann's reemployment is another promising sign for prime services staff let go from Credit Suisse: it's not just BNP Paribas, Barclays and Bank of Montreal that are open to hiring in prime in 2022.
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