April 29, 2019 / 5:25 AM / a year ago

Deutsche Bank chair against strategy change at investment bank - FT

BERLIN, April 29 (Reuters) - Deutsche Bank Chairman Paul Achleitner told the Financial Times that Germany's largest lender did not need a fundamental overhaul of its investment division after merger talks with rival Commerzbank failed.

German hopes of creating a national banking champion able to challenge global competitors were dashed on Thursday when Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank ended merger talks due to the risks of doing a deal, restructuring costs and capital demands.

Defending the turnaround efforts of Deutsche's investment division, supervisory board head Achleitner said: "Every executive has to constantly adjust to a changing market environment . . . But in this regard, we are not talking about strategy, we are talking about execution."

"In particular, in a business like the capital markets one, which is so volatile and so rapidly changing, there will be permanent adjustments," said Achleitner, who was seen as a backer of the proposed merger with Commerzbank. He said that was his personal view.

Earnings released on Friday showed net revenue at Deutsche's sprawling global investment bank, which accounts for more than half the German bank's overall revenue and which relies heavily on its bond trading earnings, fell 13 percent to 3.3 billion euros ($3.68 billion) in the first quarter.

Deutsche Bank has struggled to generate sustainable profits since the 2008 financial crisis. It is trying to turn itself around under new leadership, but has faced hurdles such as allegations of money laundering and failed stress tests.

$1 = 0.8962 euros Reporting by Michelle Martin; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

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