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Rating:BlackRock Taps a Ex-Swiss Central Banker to Woo Mega Clients
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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

BlackRock Taps a Ex-Swiss Central Banker to Woo Mega Clients

News summary by MFWire's editors

A wifely faux pas did not stop Larry Fink from signing Philipp Hildebrand to a top job at BlackRock [profile]. The BlackRock CEO is bringing the former head of the Swiss central bank on board, reports Reuters and Dow Jones.

Hildebrande, who in January left his post as chairman of the Swiss bank over a currency-trading scandal, will oversee Blackrock's relationships with large institutional clients.

The world's largest money manager said in a statement that Hildebrande "will contribute a unique perspective on global markets and economic trends to BlackRock's investment teams and also represent the firm to senior government officials and regulators across EMEA and Asia Pacific."

The Reuters article says that this move reflects CEO Larry Fink's ambition to raise Blackrock's profile in Europe's funds business and play a bigger role advising governments and regulators. Blackrock has consulted with policymakers on the restructuring of Greek and Irish debt, and Hildebrande, whom the article calls "supremely well connected among policymakers and bankers," is well positioned to expand this side of the funds firm's business.

Hildebrand joined the Swiss central bank in 2003, won praise for helping orchestrate the bailout of UBS in 2008, and was named central bank chairman in 2010.

He resigned in January after failing to prove that he had no involvement in lucrative currency trades made by his wife just weeks before he oversaw the introduction of a cap on the Swiss franc's value. 

Edited by: HFD

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