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Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman Sees 50% Recession Risk

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Morgan Stanley Chief Executive Officer James Gorman said he sees the risk of a U.S. recession at about 50% even as he’s more focused on non-financial perils including the possibility of cyber attacks.

“It was inevitable this inflation was not transitory, it was inevitable the Fed would have to move faster than they were projecting,” he said Monday at the Morgan Stanley U.S. Financials, Payments and CRE conference. “There was a legitimate recession risk. I used to think it was about 30%. It’s probably more like 50% now — it’s not 100%. It behooves you to be a little cautious.”

Morgan Stanley has strong liquidity and capital, and a sturdy credit profile, Gorman said, adding that his focus is more on non-financial risks such as data stability, cyber and operations risk “given where we are around the world and some of the geopolitical uncertainty associated with that.”

The fallout could hurt some institutions with some “potentially fatally damaged,” though US banks are in very good shape, the CEO said.

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