Deutsche Bank is holding its annual general meeting of shareholders and Die Welt's Holger Zschaepitz notes that the shares of Germany's biggest bank have sunk to yet to new lows.
As the AGM gets underway, Christian Sewing, the chief executive, has told shareholders he is ready to make cutbacks to the investment bank to improve performance:
"We will accelerate transformation by rigorously focusing our bank on profitable and growing businesses which are particularly relevant to our clients.
"So I can assure you: we're prepared to make tough cutbacks".
Commerzbank, which earlier in the year was involved in merger talks with local rival Deutsche (pictured), has reported results for the first quarter of the year.
Pre-tax profits were €225m verses €301m a year earlier while the net profit figure was 54% lower at €120m.
With those merger discussions now abandoned, the focus is turning to Commerzbank's strategy.
“We are addressing the right issues with our strategy”, said Martin Zielke, chairman of Commerzbank. “Our growth with customers and assets is enabling us to strengthen our revenue base thereby compensating the effects from low interest rates and margin pressure. We’ll leverage the current momentum with our customers to further implement our strategy".
Italian bank UniCredit is preparing a rival multibillion-euro bid to take control of Commerzbank, according to the Financial Times.
Commerzbank bank is in merger talks with local rival Deutsche Bank and the FT said that the Italian bank is unlikely to gatecrash those ongoing merger negotiations but is ready to make a move should the discussions fall apart.
“The way for us might be open,” one person close to the Italian bank told the FT.
Deutsche Bank began merger talks with local rival Commerzbank earlier this month.
Now the Financial Times is reporting that Deutsche is is discussing plans to raise as much as €10bn in fresh equity as part of a potential merger with Commerzbank.
The paper says executives have been considering a plan to raise between €3bn and €10bn of extra capital in their initial deal discussions and quotes Deutsche saying that it is “much too early at this stage of the due diligence process to make a credible assessment if there is any potential capital need at all”.
Deutsche's value on the stock market is around €15bn.
Deutsche Bank's most senior executives are getting bonuses for the first time in four years.
The management board received total pay, including bonuses, of €55.7m 2018, up from €29.8m a year earlier.
"The bank reported its first net profit since 2014. Since the management board had not received any variable compensation for financial years 2015, 2016 and 2017, we are granting the management board members the variable compensation that results from the achievement of their respective targets," said Paul Achleitner, who chairs the remuneratoin committee, said in the annual report.
Angela Merkel has also been discussing the possible merger between the two German banks, Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank.
"I think something like this is a private economic decision and am very much in favour of the German government not interfering," she said.
Reports says that German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz has urged the two to consider merging, as he believes Germany needs a national champion in the banking