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21 Apr 2008

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UBS Reports Hedge Fund Losses

UBS issued a Shareholder Report detailing the key facts relating to the firm’s positions and losses through December 31, 2007. In the summary the Swiss bank says thats it's massive subprime losses were the result of excessive risk-taking and insufficient controls.

UBS said that three of its business units are principally to blame for the losses totaling $37.4 billion over the past nine months.

UBS pinpoints a series of failures that began with its now-defunct U.S.-based hedge fund Dillon Read Capital Management. "The closure of DRCM should have been a basis for a more comprehensive review and assessment of all subprime [debt] positions in the investment bank, and for a review of UBS's risk assessment processes in connection with the same," the bank said in the report.

Other mistakes include a short-term investment outlook and a failure to appreciate the severity of the American housing crisis early on.

UBS made the summary of its report to the Swiss banking regulator public because of pressure from Ethos Fund, an activist shareholder.