ZURICH, Aug 19 (Reuters) - Credit Suisse has confirmed it arranged securities on behalf of crisis-hit Portuguese lender Banco Espirito Santo SA (BES), but said it had not sold those securities or advised any clients or affiliates of BES to buy them.
BES was rescued by the state earlier this month after posting huge losses from exposure to the crumbling business empire of its founding Espirito Santo family.
The Wall Street Journal had reported that Credit Suisse helped assemble billions of dollars in securities that were issued by offshore investment vehicles of BES and then sold to the Portuguese bank’s retail customers.
The Zurich-based lender said on Tuesday it had acted as an issuer of notes for three special-purpose vehicles (SPVs) set up by BES starting in 2001. One of these SPVs issued shares for net proceeds of around 202.5 million euros ($270.3 million) in January 2012 and February 2014.
But CS said it had played no role in selling or advising on the sale of these notes.
“Credit Suisse has no visibility as to any onward distribution by the Banco Espirito Santo branches or subsidiaries,” it said in a statement.
Credit Suisse also said it had no market or credit risk exposure to the securities.
1 US dollar = 0.7491 euro Reporting by Joshua Franklin and Oliver Hirt; Editing by David Holmes