The collapse of Standard Chartered’s ROE over the past three years was largely caused by rising impairment costs. In our view, the growth in impairments suggests that there are issues with the bank’s risk management, rather than with the underlying business proposition.
The bank’s current approach appears fragmented and lacks some of the dynamic techniques used to create a ‘fortress balance sheet’ of top-tier global universal banks.
The new senior management team appears well placed to effect such changes. The bank is undergoing a major strategic review, the focus of which is its local corporate and commercial banking franchise in key markets.