Karin Keller-Sutter named one of the world's most influential women by FT
Joining the likes of Beyoncé and Margot Robbie, Federal Councillor Karin Keller-Sutter has been named one the most influential women of 2023 by the Financial Times. The Finance Minister was placed on the list mainly for her handling of the Credit Suisse crisis.
The most influential women of 2023
In their annual list, the FT seeks to identify 25 of the most influential women in the world. For this list, influence is defined as the “power to persuade, advocate for change and imagine better ways of doing things.”
Using the thoughts and input of readers, industry leaders, experts and journalists, the list seeks to combine women with different types of influence. From sports stars like tennis player Coco Gauff and fashion designer Phoebe Philo to entrepreneurs like Mira Murati and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
Swiss Finance Minister one of the FT's most influential women
This year, Karin Keller-Sutter was named one of the 25 most influential women of 2023. Born in Uzwil, Canton St. Gallen and originally working as a teacher before first joining politics in 1992, the FDP Federal Councillor has been a member of the executive since 2019 and took on the role of Finance Minister in 2023.
Writing in the FT, Swedish Finance Minister Elisabeth Svantesson said that “knowledge, courage and determination are perhaps the most important qualities in a politician - and, for me, Karin embodies all of these.” Specifically, she argued that the minister’s actions during the merger of Credit Suisse with UBS “rescued the Swiss economy.”
Karin Keller-Sutter given high praise for handling of Credit Suisse
Indeed, the federal government's swift move to get the Swiss National Bank to offer an emergency loan to Credit Suisse, and then encourage and incentivise UBS to take over the bank was given high praise. Without the bailout and merger, many predicted that Credit Suisse would go bankrupt, heavily damaging the Swiss economy and practically destroying the country’s reputation for stability and good financial governance.
The finances of the deal have also been the topic of praise. UBS has already paid back much of what it owed to federal authorities, meaning once interest rates have been factored in, the state made a profit out of the deal.
However, many have raised concerns about the bank that was created thanks to the merger, as it now controls over 6 trillion US dollars in assets - some have argued it is too big a bank for Switzerland to control. In addition, the merger has seen hundreds of CS workers lose their jobs.
The world's owes Keller-Sutter a debt of gratitude, says Swedish minister
Nevertheless, Svantesson praised Keller-Sutter’s character in making the merger happen: “As minister of finance, you have a lot of expertise around you. But when it comes down to it, it is you who has to make that crucial decision that will affect a lot of people, often under pressure…we all owe her a debt of gratitude. That became clear at this year’s IMF meeting in Washington when she received well-deserved appreciation for her actions from around the world.”
For more information, and to see which other defining women made the cut, check out the FT website.
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