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Deutsche Financial institution shares up eight% after U-turn to wind down Russia operations

A logo stands on display above the headquarters of Deutsche Bank AG at the Aurora Business Park in Moscow, Russia.

Andrey Rudakov | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Deutsche Bank has said it will wind down its Russia operations — a major U-turn that sent shares higher Monday.

In an announcement released late Friday, the German bank said it was joining a host of international peers in exiting the country in response to its invasion of Ukraine and resultant operational restrictions.

The move came a day after chief financial officer James von Moltke told CNBC Thursday that it was “not practical” to close its Russia business.

Deutsche Bank shares jumped higher as investors acknowledged the turnaround, rising more than 8% in early Monday trade before closing the day up over 7%.

“Like some international peers and in line with our legal and regulatory obligations, we are in the process of winding down our remaining business in Russia while we help our non-Russian multinational clients in reducing their operations,” the bank said in a statement announcing the departure.

“There won’t be any new business in Russia,” it added.

The decision follows similar moves by Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase and HSBC, which all announced last week that they would wind down their operations in Russia, joining a host of major corporations that have distanced themselves from the pariah state.

CFO von Moltke had previously defended the bank’s decision to remain operational in Russia, owing to its responsibility to its clients there.

“We’re there to support our clients. And so, for practical purposes, that isn’t an option that’s available to us. Nor would it be the right thing to do in terms of managing those client relationships and helping them to manage their situation,” he said at the time.

The comments drew ire as pressure mounts on companies to support Western allies in boycotting President Vladimir Putin over his invasion of Ukraine.

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