Deutsche Bank AG, Germany's biggest lender, expects to post a 2.1 billion-euro ($2.3 billion) loss for the fourth quarter after setting aside more money for legal matters and taking a restructuring charge. The stock is at the lowest since 2009.

About 1.2 billion euros were earmarked for litigation and 800 million euros for restructuring and severance costs, mainly in the private and business clients division, the Frankfurt-based firm said Wednesday in a statement. "Challenging market conditions" also hurt earnings at the investment bank during the quarter, cutting group revenue to about 6.6 billion euros, it said. The bank had reported 7.8 billion euros of net revenue a year earlier.


"This will be the bank's first full-year loss since 2008, and it is sobering," [CEO] Cryan said in a note to employees posted on the bank's website. "We expect the next two years to consist of hard work, burdened by the costs of restructuring the bank and making much-needed investments. By taking these steps, however, we have the potential to transform ourselves from a restructuring story into a strong, efficient, and well-run institution."


Deutsche Bank has racked up more expenses for litigation and fines since the start of 2008 than any other financial firm on the Continent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Its legal costs in the fourth quarter also exceeded the 750 million-euro estimate of Piers Brown, a Macquarie Group Ltd. analyst.

Deutsche Bank has been contending with several regulatory probes into alleged misconduct. The U.S. Department of Justice and the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority have been looking into so-called "mirror trades" originating from its Moscow office. The Justice Department also has been examining what role the bank played in the industry's manipulation of currency exchange rates and precious metals trading. And Deutsche Bank has said it's cooperating with a U.S. probe of mortgage-backed securities.

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