London (CNN Business)Deutsche Bank is in rough shape and its leadership has gone silent on their plans for the future.
First quarter results from Germany’s largest bank on Friday showed that revenue is falling faster than costs, one day after merger talks with crosstown rival Commerzbank (CRZBF) were called off.
Yet CEO Christian Sewing has been mum on a path forward.
“We will not be drawn on speculation about what other options we have considered or what options are or are not under ongoing consideration,” Sewing said when asked about potential strategy changes during an earnings call.
“You should also not draw any conclusion from this unwillingness to comment,” he added.
Shares in Deutsche Bank (DB) dropped over 3% in Frankfurt, pushing losses over the past year to nearly 40%.Investors clearly want Sewing to be more forthcoming about what happens next, but he did not provide details.
“[It’s] too early to share a detailed update on our thinking,” he said.
Deutsche Bank has struggled to find direction in the years following the global financial crisis, embarking on a series of overhauls that have failed to yield consistent profits.
Its problems were on full display in its latest quarterly earnings.
Profit rose 67% in the first three months of the year, but that was due entirely to yet another round of belt-tightening. Revenue fell 9%, and the company said it would be “essentially flat” for the year.
Deutsche Bank has stepped back in recent years from some investment banking activities. But the division still accounts for more than half the bank’s revenue and it’s under strain, eating up huge chunks of capital even as it falls further behind competitors.
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