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UBS's first-quarter 2014 result

Zurich/Basel | | Price Sensitive Information | Quarterly Results

   

UBS’s first-quarter adjusted1 profit before tax up 97% to
CHF 1.5 billion

Net profit attributable to UBS shareholders CHF 1.1 billion; diluted EPS CHF 0.27

Wealth management businesses net new money CHF 12.8 billion

Global Asset Management net new money CHF 13.0 billion excluding money markets

Fully applied Basel III CET1 ratio 13.2%, above 2014 target

Phase-in Swiss SRB leverage ratio 5.0%

Zurich/Basel, 6 May 2014 – UBS delivered a solid first-quarter performance despite a volatile operating environment. Every one of UBS’s business divisions and regions was profitable, reflecting the firm’s successful strategy and the strong positions it has created both from a business mix perspective and regionally. This enabled the firm to deliver an adjusted1 profit before tax of CHF 1.5 billion, up 97% on the prior quarter. On a reported basis, profit before tax was
CHF 1.4 billion. UBS continued to strengthen its industry-leading fully applied Basel III common equity tier 1 (CET1) ratio, which increased 40 basis points to 13.2%, surpassing its 13% target for 2014. The firm’s phase-in Swiss SRB leverage ratio increased 30 basis points to 5.0%. UBS attracted net new money of CHF 12.8 billion into its wealth management businesses, and Global Asset Management recorded very strong net inflows. UBS continues to effectively execute its strategy as it moves to the next phase of delivering attractive and sustainable returns to shareholders.

Together with the presentation of its financial results for the first quarter, UBS is providing an update to investors on its strategic progress and the compelling prospects for its future. The firm intends to further modify its legal structure in order to enhance its resolvability in response to evolving global regulatory requirements which will also improve its capital returns potential. For more information see the separate releases available at www.ubs.com/investors

Group highlights

  • Adjusted1 profit before tax CHF 1.5 billion
  • Net profit attributable to UBS shareholders CHF 1.1 billion; diluted earnings per share
    CHF 0.27
  • Adjusted1 operating income CHF 7.1 billion
  • Fully applied Basel III CET1 ratio up 40 basis points to 13.2%
  • Phase-in Swiss SRB Basel III leverage ratio up 30 basis points to 5.0%
  • Fully applied Basel III risk-weighted assets (RWA) CHF 227 billion

Business division highlights

  • Wealth Management increased adjusted1 profit before tax to CHF 659 million; net new money strong at CHF 10.9 billion; net new money growth rate of 4.9% at upper end of target range; gross margin on invested assets increased 2 basis points to 87 basis points; adjusted1 cost / income ratio improved and was within the target range
  • Wealth Management Americas delivered record adjusted1 profit before tax of USD 284 million; net new money USD 2.1 billion; adjusted1 cost / income ratio and gross margin on invested assets maintained within target ranges
  • Retail & Corporate increased adjusted1 profit before tax to CHF 401 million, the best first-quarter performance since 2010; net new business volume growth for the retail business ahead of target at 4.3%; net interest margin and adjusted1 cost / income ratio within target ranges
  • Global Asset Management delivered adjusted1 profit before tax of CHF 126 million; very strong net new money of CHF 13.0 billion excluding money market flows; annualized net new money growth rate ahead of target at 6.6%
  • Investment Bank increased adjusted1 profit before tax to CHF 549 million; fully applied RWA and the funded balance sheet were well within limits; adjusted1 cost / income ratio improved and was well within the target range; higher adjusted1 return on attributed equity at 27.8%, comfortably ahead of its target of greater than 15%

Commenting on UBS’s first-quarter results, Group Chief Executive Officer Sergio P. Ermotti said, “Surpassing the 13% CET1 ratio target we set two years ago is a major milestone for the firm and its stakeholders. I’m pleased with the first quarter as we demonstrated sustainable profitability across all business divisions and regions. Dedicated and disciplined execution of our strategy for the benefit of clients and shareholders remains our top priority.” 

Group overview

For the first quarter of 2014, we reported a net profit attributable to shareholders of
CHF 1,054 million and diluted earnings per share of CHF 0.27. We recorded an adjusted1 Group profit before tax of CHF 1,486 million, a solid performance achieved despite a volatile operating environment.

We are pleased to have surpassed our long-stated fully applied Basel III common equity tier 1 (CET1) ratio target of 13% already in the first quarter. Our premier CET1 ratio is the result of actively reducing risk-weighted assets (RWA) and building Basel III-compliant capital by growing our retained earnings. We continued to deleverage our balance sheet, reducing total assets by CHF 36 billion during the quarter. Our Basel III funding and liquidity ratios as well as our Swiss SRB leverage ratio remained comfortably above our regulatory requirements and we expect to meet the fully applied 2019 leverage ratio regulatory requirements ahead of schedule. Our fully applied leverage ratio improved meaningfully to 3.8% due to a combination of reducing the denominator to below CHF 1 trillion and increasing the numerator through higher CET1 capital and the issuance of EUR 2.0 billion of low-trigger, loss-absorbing Basel III-compliant subordinated notes. This brings our total amount of low-trigger tier 2 capital to CHF 7.1 billion, against an expected progressive buffer requirement of around CHF 9 billion by 2019. Our fully applied total capital ratio already stands at 16.8%, versus our expected requirement of around 17.5% by 2019.

Wealth Management delivered an increase in adjusted1 profit before tax to CHF 659 million due to higher operating income and lower operating expenses. Transaction-based income increased, largely due to higher client activity across all regions, most notably in Asia Pacific. The gross margin on invested assets increased 2 basis points to 87 basis points, as income growth outpaced an increase in average invested assets. Net new money was strong at CHF 10.9 billion, with Asia Pacific and emerging markets as the main contributors. We achieved a net new money growth rate that was comfortably within the upper end of our target range. The adjusted1 cost / income ratio improved and was within our target range and we expect further reductions in future.

Wealth Management Americas made a strong start to the year with a record adjusted1 profit before tax of USD 284 million. An increase in operating income, mainly due to higher managed account fees, was largely offset by higher adjusted1 operating expenses. The business continued to attract client assets, with net new money amounting to USD 2.1 billion. While the net new money growth rate was 0.9%, improved performance from experienced financial advisors was offset by outflows from financial advisor attrition. The business maintained both its adjusted1 cost / income ratio and its gross margin on invested assets within target ranges.

Our Retail & Corporate business recorded a higher adjusted1 profit before tax of CHF 401 million, mainly due to lower operating expenses as a result of lower litigation expenses. Net new business volume growth for our retail business was 4.3%, ahead of target. The adjusted1 cost / income ratio and net interest margin were both within our target range. Our new e-banking platform received the highest accolade possible in the cross-industry Best of Swiss Web 2014 awards and was cited as an outstanding project in terms of technology and expertise. As the leading universal bank in Switzerland and an important provider of pension advisory services, we are giving our private and wealth management client advisors additional training in this area and are launching a nationwide campaign to raise public awareness of the importance of retirement planning.

Global Asset Management recorded a lower adjusted1 profit before tax of CHF 126 million. The business’s adjusted1 cost / income ratio remained outside its target range. Excluding money market flows, net new money was very strong at CHF 13.0 billion, the highest amount since the third quarter of 2005, and included significant net inflows from both third parties and UBS’s wealth management clients. Including money market flows, total net new money reached CHF 9.6 billion, the highest amount since the third quarter of 2006. The net new money growth rate was ahead of target at 6.6%. The gross margin on invested assets was 31 basis points, slightly below target.

The Investment Bank increased adjusted1 profit before tax to CHF 549 million. Operating income was positively affected by strong revenues, particularly in debt capital markets and equities. In cash equities we recorded our best first-quarter performance since 2011. As a result of improved performance, operating expenses increased on higher variable compensation expenses, partly offset by lower general and administrative expenses. At CHF 62 billion, fully applied RWA remained unchanged and were consistent with our target of less than CHF 70 billion. The adjusted1 cost / income ratio improved and was well within the target range. The business achieved an improved adjusted1 return on attributed equity of 28% compared with 20% in the prior quarter. Resources and risk were managed in line with client activity and our return on attributed equity result was comfortably ahead of our greater than 15% target.

Corporate Center – Core Functions recorded a loss before tax of CHF 176 million. After allocations to the business divisions and Non-core and Legacy Portfolio, total operating expenses increased to CHF 227 million. A gain on own credit was partly offset by negative treasury income remaining after allocations. The loss before tax in Corporate Center – Non-core and Legacy Portfolio reduced to CHF 225 million, mainly due to an improvement in debit valuation adjustments, revaluation gains in our credit business and lower losses from unwind and novation activities. We continued to make progress in reducing balance sheet assets, which declined by CHF 25 billion. Fully applied RWA decreased by CHF 3 billion to CHF 60 billion at the end of the quarter. We expect to make further progress in exiting the remaining Non-core and Legacy positions during 2014.

Results by business division and Corporate Center

Outlook – At the start of the second quarter of 2014, many of the underlying challenges and geopolitical issues that we have previously highlighted remain. The continued absence of sustained and credible improvements to unresolved issues in Europe, continuing US fiscal and monetary policy issues, geopolitical instability and the mixed outlook for global growth would make improvements in prevailing market conditions unlikely. Despite these challenges, we will continue to execute on our strategy in order to ensure the firm’s long-term success and to deliver sustainable returns for our shareholders.

1Unless otherwise indicated, first-quarter 2014 “adjusted“ figures exclude each of the following items, to the extent applicable, on a Group and business division level: own credit gain of CHF 88 million, gains on sales of real estate of CHF 23 million and net restructuring charges of CHF 204 million. For the fourth quarter of 2013, the items we excluded were an own credit loss of CHF 94 million, gains on sales of real estate of CHF 61 million, a loss related to the buyback of debt in a public tender offer of CHF 75 million and net restructuring charges of CHF 198 million.

UBS’s First Quarter 2014 Report, letter to shareholders, news releases and slide presentations will be available from 06.45 CEST on Tuesday 6 May 2014 at www.ubs.com/investors.

UBS will hold a presentation of its first quarter 2014 results followed by an Investor Update on Tuesday 6 May 2014. The results will be presented by Sergio P. Ermotti, Group Chief Executive Officer, Tom Naratil, Group Chief Financial Officer and Group Chief Operating Officer, Martin Osinga, Global Head of Investor Relations (ad interim), and Hubertus Kuelps, Group Head of Communications & Branding.

Results presentation (followed by analyst Q&A and media Q&A) time:

10.00 – 10.55 (CEST) / 09.00 – 09.55 (BST) / 04.00 – 04.55 (US EDT)

Investor Update time:

11.10 – 15.45 (CEST) / 10.10 – 14.45 (BST) / 05.10 – 09.45 (US EDT)

Video webcast

All presentations and Q&A sessions (first quarter 2014 results and Investor Update) can be followed live via video webcast on www.ubs.com/investors.

An archived version of the video webcast of the results presentation will be available on www.ubs.com/investors.

Audio

6 May 2014, 10.00 – 15.45 CEST

Dial-in numbers:

+41 (0)58 310 50 00 (CH/Europe)
+44 (0)203 059 58 62 (UK)
+1 (1)631 570 5613 (USA)
+41 (0)58 310 50 00 (other locations)

UBS AG


Investor contact

Switzerland:    +41-44-234 41 00

Media contact

Switzerland:   +41-44-234 85 00
UK:                 +44-207-567 47 14
Americas:       +1-212-882 58 57
APAC:            +852-297-1 82 00

www.ubs.com

Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements | This report contains statements that constitute “forward-looking statements”, including but not limited to management’s outlook for UBS’s financial performance and statements relating to the anticipated effect of transactions and strategic initiatives on UBS’s business and future development. While these forward-looking statements represent UBS’s judgments and expectations concerning the matters described, a number of risks, uncertainties and other important factors could cause actual developments and results to differ materially from UBS’s expectations. These factors include, but are not limited to: (i) the degree to which UBS is successful in executing its announced strategic plans, including its efficiency initiatives and its planned further reduction in its Basel III risk-weighted assets (RWA) and leverage ratio denominator; (ii) developments in the markets in which UBS operates or to which it is exposed, including movements in securities prices or liquidity, credit spreads, currency exchange rates and interest rates and the effect of economic conditions and market developments on the financial position or creditworthiness of UBS’s clients and counterparties; (iii) changes in the availability of capital and funding, including any changes in UBS’s credit spreads and ratings, or arising from requirements for bail-in debt or loss-absorbing capital; (iv) changes in or the implementation of financial legislation and regulation in Switzerland, the US, the UK and other financial centers that may impose more stringent capital (including leverage ratio), liquidity and funding requirements, incremental tax requirements, additional levies, limitations on permitted activities, constraints on remuneration or other measures; (v) uncertainty as to when and to what degree the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) will approve reductions to the incremental RWA resulting from the supplemental operational risk-capital analysis mutually agreed to by UBS and FINMA effective 31 December 2013, or will approve a limited reduction of capital requirements due to measures to reduce resolvability risk; (vi) the degree to which UBS is successful in executing the announced creation of a new Swiss banking subsidiary, a holding company for the UBS Group, a US intermediate holding company, changes in the operating model of UBS Limited and other changes which UBS may make in its legal entity structure and operating model, including the possible consequences of such changes, and the potential need to make other changes to the legal structure or booking model of UBS Group in response to legal and regulatory requirements, including capital requirements, resolvability requirements and the pending Swiss parliamentary proposals and proposals in other countries for mandatory structural reform of banks; (vii) changes in UBS’s competitive position, including whether differences in regulatory capital and other requirements among the major financial centers will adversely affect UBS’s ability to compete in certain lines of business; (viii) the liability to which UBS may be exposed, or possible constraints or sanctions that regulatory authorities might impose on UBS, due to litigation, contractual claims and regulatory investigations; (ix) the effects on UBS’s cross-border banking business of tax or regulatory developments and of possible changes in UBS’s policies and practices relating to this business; (x) UBS’s ability to retain and attract the employees necessary to generate revenues and to manage, support and control its businesses, which may be affected by competitive factors including differences in compensation practices; (xi) changes in accounting or tax standards or policies, and determinations or interpretations affecting the recognition of gain or loss, the valuation of goodwill, the recognition of deferred tax assets and other matters; (xii) limitations on the effectiveness of UBS’s internal processes for risk management, risk control, measurement and modeling, and of financial models generally; (xiii) whether UBS will be successful in keeping pace with competitors in updating its technology, particularly in trading businesses; (xiv) the occurrence of operational failures, such as fraud, unauthorized trading and systems failures; and (xv) the effect that these or other factors or unanticipated events may have on our reputation and the additional consequences that this may have on our business and performance. The sequence in which the factors above are presented is not indicative of their likelihood of occurrence or the potential magnitude of their consequences. Our business and financial performance could be affected by other factors identified in our past and future filings and reports, including those filed with the SEC. More detailed information about those factors is set forth in documents furnished by UBS and filings made by UBS with the SEC, including UBS’s Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended 31 December 2013. UBS is not under any obligation to (and expressly disclaims any obligation to) update or alter its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

Rounding | Numbers presented throughout this report may not add up precisely to the totals provided in the tables and text. Percentages and percent changes are calculated based on rounded figures displayed in the tables and text and may not precisely reflect the percentages and percent changes that would be derived based on figures that are not rounded.

Tables | Within tables, blank fields generally indicate that the field is not applicable or not meaningful, or that information is not available as of the relevant date or for the relevant period. Zero values generally indicate that the respective figure is zero on an actual or rounded basis.