SocGen says it would turn to shareholders rather than taxpayers for funds

 
City A.M. Reporter
Societe Generale could turn to its own shareholders if it ever needed to raise additional capital and has no need for government funds, its chief executive said.

"If we ever needed it, which I doubt, we could call for funds from our shareholders, and in any case we won't seek public funds," Frederic Oudea told Europe 1 radio station.

SocGen shares have lost 53 per cent of their value this year and the bank has been seen as one of Europe's most vulnerable as U.S. money market funds have stopped buying French banks' short-term debt.

Oudea said that despite estimates that French banks would have to raise 10BN euros (£9bn) as part of a Europe-wide move to strengthen banks' capital, SocGen would be able to bolster its financial strength by setting aside part of its profits.

"We're waiting for the number, but it will be something completely manageable," he said. "Thanks to our results, we're going to continue to make profits. We'll keep those profits in the bank to keep accumulating this safety net."

Oudea also said the bank still should be able to pay dividends and that bonuses paid would be "moderate and reasonable."