Swiss prosecutors have opened an investigation into possible illegal activity in connection with government support for UBS’s rushed takeover of Credit Suisse, the Financial Times reported Sunday.
The two banks agreed to merge in March as part of a 3 billion Swiss franc emergency deal targeted at avoiding a national financial crisis that could have had a knock-on effect globally.
“The Federal Prosecutor’s office wants to proactively fulfill its mission and responsibility to contribute to a clean Swiss financial center and has set up monitoring in order to take immediate action in any situation that falls within its field of activity,” the authority told the Financial Times.
Last month, Zurich-based UBS was forced by Swiss authorities to take over its longtime domestic rival Credit Suisse in a deal that creates a new bank.
The deal has been unpopular locally and on Sunday, Swiss daily Tages-Anzeiger reported that the new entity could slash jobs by up to 30 percent.
“If we had done nothing, [Credit Suisse] shares would have been worthless on Monday and the shareholders would have gone home empty-handed,” Swiss Finance Minister Karin Keller-Sutter said last weekend in justifying the deal.