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UBS revises full-year loss to 20.9 billion francs

Latest update : 2009-03-11

After the Swiss bank announced last month that its full-year loss had reached nearly 19.7 billion francs, UBS has now revised upwards its full-year loss for 2008 to 20.9 billion francs (14.2 billion euros, 17.9 billion dollars).

AFP - Swiss bank UBS revised upwards its full-year loss for 2008 to 20.9 billion francs (14.2 billion euros, 17.9 billion dollars) on Wednesday, taking a charge of 1.19 billion francs for settling a tax fraud case with the United States.

The bank -- which last month said its full-year loss reached 19.697 billion francs, the biggest in Swiss corporate history -- also gave a cautious outlook for the year ahead, saying earnings would be under pressure "for some time to come".

UBS has been struggling to recover from the US subprime home loan crisis and the ensuing financial fallout.

Last month, it admitted to abetting tax fraud in the United States and paid 780 million dollars to settle the case.

But the US government has since filed a lawsuit to force the firm to disclose the identities of as many as 52,000 US customers who allegedly evaded taxes.

UBS acknowledged Wednesday that worsening financial conditions, as well as what it described as problems unique to UBS, have "adversely affected our results," particularly in its investment banking operations.

"Even after substantial risk reduction, our balance sheet remains exposed to illiquid and volatile markets and our earnings will therefore remain at risk for some time to come," it said.

It gave an "extremely cautious" outlook for the near-term.

"For 2009, we will continue to implement our programme to strengthen our financial position by reducing our risk positions, our overall balance sheet size, and our operating costs," it said.

Date created : 2009-03-11