Deutsche Bank's chief risk officer hits back and explains the real derivatives exposure

Oliver Gill
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Stuart Lewis is the troubled German lender's chief risk officer (Source: Getty)

Fears over Deutsche Bank's mammoth derivative exposure have been completely overblown according to its chief risk officer.

Stuart Lewis got on the front foot when asked about the beleaguered German lender's derivative exposure this weekend.

"The risks in our derivatives book are massively overestimated. The €46 trillion (£41 trillion) figure sounds gigantic, but it is completely misleading. The real risk is far lower," he said.

Read more: Why is Deutsche Bank in such trouble?

According to Lewis, the €46 trillion represents the notional value of the contracts rather than the actual real exposure to the bank, which, he told German newspaper Welt am Sonntag, was closer to €41bn.

The comments came after the German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said on Saturday the focus on Deutsche Bank was over the top. "There is far too much talk about Deutsche Bank," he said.

Meanwhile Deutsche Bank's chief executive John Cryan has failed to break the deadlock in coming to an agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice over the level of fines the German lender will pay for its alleged misconduct in relation to its mortgage-backed security operations.

Read more: Deutsche Bank mulls IPO of asset management unit

Germany's Bild am Sonntag newspaper said that an agreement had not been reached over the $14bn settlement offer proposed by the Department of Justice. Deutsche Bank only set aside €5.5bn ($6.6bn) in provisions for litigation at the end of June.

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