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UBS completes Swiss mega-merger, gains clout as global wealth player

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ZURICH (Reuters) – UBS on Monday said it completed its emergency takeover of embattled local rival Credit Suisse, creating a giant Swiss bank with a balance sheet of $1.6 trillion and greater muscle in wealth management.

Commenting on the biggest banking deal since the 2008 global financial crisis, UBS CEO Sergio Ermotti and Chairman Colm Kelleher said “this is the start of a new chapter” in an open letter published in Swiss newspapers.

The group will oversee $5 trillion of assets giving UBS, the world’s largest wealth manager, a leading position in key markets it would otherwise have needed years to grow in size and reach. The merger also brings to an end Credit Suisse’s 167-year history, marred in recent years by scandals and losses.

The two banks jointly employ 120,000 worldwide, although UBS has already said it will be cutting jobs to take advantage of synergies and reduce costs.

(Reporting by Noele Illien; Editing by Miranda Murray and Edwina Gibbs)

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