deutsche bank

The Return of Levelheadedness

  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Recent scandals cost Deutsche Bank its close connection to the government but now, under new CEO John Cryan, Germany’s largest bank is beginning to repair its relationship with the government.

  • Facts


    • Deutsche Bank received strong support from German politicians and companies when its share price fell to record lows amid its struggle with the U.S. Justice Department over questionable mortgage deals in the past.
    • After the LIBOR manipulation scandal, Berlin began to take a more critical view of the bank, leading to tensions in the relationship between Deutsche Bank and the government.
    • As part of an effort to repair its reputation, Deutsche Bank has replaced or reassigned many top managers.
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John Cryan, chief executive officer of Deutsche Bank AG. Source: Jason Alden / Bloomberg

Deutsche Bank’s New Year’s reception in Berlin was always something special. As well as customers, guests at the reception include many lawmakers, creating a good opportunity to send political messages.

This year was a little different: Chief Executive Officer John Cryan used it partly for a message of thanks, after a tough few months that nearly brought the bank to its knees.

“Last September and October, you showed us how valuable our close relationship with you is,” said Mr. Cryan, a British-born banker who spoke German before several hundred guests. “At the time, many of you remained consciously on our side and supported us, both privately and publicly. We appreciate that, and we will not forget it.”

It was a new tone for Germany’s largest bank, which for much of the past two decades was far more focused on New York and London than on Berlin or Frankfurt.

It took the bank’s near-collapse to usher in that change.

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