ZURICH (Reuters) - Big banks UBS and Credit Suisse stopped trading shares in Swiss pumpmaker Sulzer, traders in Zurich said on Wednesday, amid uncertainty over U.S. sanctions on its largest shareholder, Russian billionaire Viktor Vekselberg.
Sulzer’s U.S. bank accounts have been frozen for certain transactions after sanctions were levied last week against Vekselberg and other oligarchs close to Russian President Vladimir Putin as punishment for alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election and other “malign activity.”
Chief Executive Greg Poux-Guillaume told Swiss newspaper Finanz und Wirtschaft he was working to free Sulzer from sanctions, actions that include a share buyback to reduce Vekselberg’s 63 percent stake to less than 50 percent.
Credit Suisse did not comment immediately. UBS said it was following current sanctions levied by Switzerland, the United Nations, the European Union and the United States.