SWITZERLAND – Credit Suisse Asset Management has recorded a 2.4 billion Swiss-franc (1.5 billion-euro) net outflow of assets in the fourth quarter.

“For the fourth quarter of 2003, Credit Suisse Asset Management reported a 2.4 billion-franc net outflow of assets,” parent Credit Suisse said in a statement.

CSAM’s operating income in the fourth quarter rose 14% over the prior year periods.

Total assets under management as at December 31 2003 were 392.9 billion francs down from 412.8 billion francs a year earlier.

In its life and pensions arm, Credit Suisse reported a profit of 723 million francs for 2003, compared to a loss of 1.4 billion francs in 2002. The recovery was due to a “significant improvement” in investment performance and a large cut in administration costs.

“The Life & pensions segment remains exposed to the volatility of the financial markets due to the nature of its business,” Credit Suisse said.

“The implementation of the new employee benefit model, as well as the Swiss government’s further reduction of the guaranteed rate of return for the employee benefit business to 2.25%, effective January 1 2004, is expected to partially mitigate the impact of the volatility.”