Current CEO: Josef Ackermann
Deutsche Bank AG is one of the world’s leading financial services companies and its largest foreign exchange dealer. Although Deutsche Bank AG is Germany’s biggest bank, from its inception in 1870, Deutsche Bank set its sights on a global banking presence. The bank maintains offices in all the world’s major financial centers with headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany.
Deutsche Bank was founded as a financial institution specializing in foreign trade. Its early investments included stakes in the chemical company Bayer and the arms company Krupp. The bank also helped finance the fledgling Edison General Electric Company, as well as the construction of the Northern Pacific Railroad in the United States.
During World War II, the bank worked closely with the Nazi government, confiscating Jewish-owned businesses and providing the financing that was used to build the Auschwitz concentration camp. After the War, the Allies mandated the dissolution of Deutsche Bank into ten regional banks that eventually reconsolidated, becoming Deutsche Bank AG in 1957.
Today, Deutsche Bank is a commercial bank offering financial products to corporate and institutional clients that include fund management, wealth management, derivatives and corporate financing. The company has been criticized for its involvement in the U.S. housing credit bubble: Deutsche Bank AG continued to sell bad collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) to investors even after the bank knew the CDOs weren’t legitimate. In 2008, Deutsche Bank AG received $11.8 billion from its insurance arrangement with the American International Group (AIG); these funds were part of the bailout package the American government had arranged for AIG. The company was also implicated in a much publicized scandal in 2007 when its corporate security department was accused of spying on particularly outspoken critics of the bank’s operations.
Working at Deutsche Bank means working in a high pressure environment with long hours and rigorous managerial oversight. Salaries are high, however, and Deutsche Bank benefits are described as outstanding. In addition to health insurance, the company provides full maternity, paternity and adoption leave and membership to local museums. Deutsche Bank culture is entrepreneurial, which means there are frequent ups and downs, particularly recently, due to stock market volatility. The volatility leads to frequent restructuring within divisions with attendant layoffs. Promotions are made on the basis of seniority rather than the demonstration of outstanding performance. Deutsche Bank careers are in financial services, management, business analysis and technical support.