Credit Suisse hires MD for equity derivatives business from defunct hedge fund

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Credit Suisse has made a senior equities hire, taking on a former partner at defunct hedge fund Occitan Capital Partners to lead its algorithmic trading volatility products business.

Alexandre Capez joined the Swiss bank earlier this month, according to sources close to the situation, as managing director in its equities division, overseeing algorithmic volatility.

It’s a significant new equity derivatives recruit for Credit Suisse, which recently pointed to improved performance in this business area in its Q1 results amid a decline in cash equities revenues. Equity trading improved by 13% on Q4, to CHF1.2bn, on the back of stronger revenues in prime services and derivative products.

Capez was a partner and portfolio manager for the tail risk fund at Occitan, the hedge fund set up by former Nomura traders in 2010, until its closure in May 2013. In 2012, Occitan made bets that volatility in equity markets would increase as the crisis took hold in Europe, but the pledge by European Central Bank president, Mario Draghi, to “do whatever it takes” to keep the Eurozone together steadied the markets and left the hedge fund exposed.

Before joining Occitan, Capez was managing director and head of structured volatility at Nomura, having previously headed this division at Lehman Brothers until the takeover of its European operation by the Japanese bank.

He created Voltage, the successful volatility exchange-traded product launched by Nomura in 2011.

Capez has the sort of educational pedigree you would expect of an equity derivatives specialist. He’s French and holds an MSc in Management from ESSEC Business School as well as a post-graduate diploma in probabilities and stochastic calculus from Paris VI University.

Credit Suisse declined to comment on the appointment.

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