Zurich / Basel, 09 April 2020 – Following a request from FINMA, the Board of Directors has revised the 2019 dividend proposal to be approved by shareholders at the Annual General Meeting on 29 April 2020. The Board of Directors asks shareholders to approve a dividend distribution of USD 0.365 per share to be paid on 7 May 2020 and a special dividend reserve of USD 0.365 per share. The Board of Directors intends to propose the distribution of this additional USD 0.365 per share at an extraordinary general meeting, to be convened on 19 November 2020, after publication of UBS’s third quarter results.
UBS currently expects to report a first quarter 2020 net profit of around USD 1.5 billion, with strong operating performance in all business divisions, even after accounting for credit loss expenses and own credit valuation adjustments. The firm expects its CET1 capital and CET1 leverage ratios at the end of the first quarter 2020 to be in line with its targets, and well above regulatory requirements, despite market conditions leading to a significant increase in credit and market risk RWAs. UBS will publish its first quarter 2020 results on 28 April.
Axel A. Weber, Chairman of the Board of Directors: "Our financial strength well above regulatory requirements and prudent risk management allow us to deliver on our current capital returns policy. Nevertheless, at FINMA's request, we have adjusted the 2019 dividend payout proposal given the high and unprecedented uncertainty."
Sergio P. Ermotti, Group Chief Executive Officer: "The first quarter of 2020 once again showed our business model's ability to perform well under a variety of market conditions. We have been supporting our clients with lending and advice, helping them to navigate in this very difficult environment."
To the extent UBS decides not to proceed with the payment of the second instalment of the 2019 dividend to preserve capital, we will eliminate all cash payments of the 2020 GEB incentive award and allocate them into our deferred equity-based and contingent capital compensation plans. As needed, we also commit to take further measures as the year unfolds in all 2020 compensation decisions and review our policies for both management and the Board of Directors.
UBS supports the immediate measures announced by the Swiss Federal Council to support the economy with a focus on SME in conjunction with UBS and other Swiss banks. The firm has already provided CHF 2.1 billion in liquidity to over 16,000 mostly small and medium-sized companies since the launch of the Swiss government-backed lending program on 26 March 2020. UBS has committed to make no profit from this support. Through our Swiss business domestically and our Investment Bank globally, we have provided liquidity to our corporate clients. Our Global Wealth Management business has provided advice to clients worldwide. Finally, UBS has committed to donate USD 30 million towards COVID-19 aid projects to support the communities in which the firm operates.
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