New head of UBS wealth unit rebuffs disposal talk

ROBERT McCann, the new head of the battered US wealth management unit of Swiss bank UBS, said he aims to stem client withdrawals and has no plans to sell the business.

McCann, a Merrill Lynch veteran who led the brokerage’s wealth management business until early this year, took up his new $850,000-a-year post yesterday and vowed to rebuild trust in UBS’ money-losing American unit. McCann had been courted by UBS chief executive Oswald Gruebel since July and sued Bank of America Merrill Lynch to enable him to join the Swiss rival.

The US wealth management division of UBS was hit by Sfr5.8bn (£3.5bn) of net client outflows in the second quarter as the bank fought a bruising tax fraud case with US authorities. Analysts say it is still suffering, with some speculating that UBS might sell the business.