By Kristen Haunss
(Reuters) - Credit Suisse in an e-mail to expected attendees of its upcoming credit conference in Miami detailed protection measures the venue is taking to address the Zika virus.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said local transmissions of Zika, a mosquito-borne disease that has been linked to microcephaly, a birth defect marked by a small head size, have been identified in the Miami Beach area. In August the CDC issued travel guidance recommending pregnant women not travel to the affected areas.
The Fontainebleau hotel, where the conference is to be held next week, is following guidelines provided by the City of Miami, the Florida Department of Health, Miami Dade County and the CDC, and is regularly spraying public areas and grounds with insecticide, pruning trees, inspecting pools twice a day and clearing standing water, David Miller, global head of credit at the bank, said in the Thursday e-mail to expected attendees of the bank’s Global Credit Product Conference obtained by LPC. The hotel will also be providing bug spray.
“The health and safety of Credit Suisse’s employees, clients and partners is our highest priority,” a Credit Suisse spokesperson said in an e-mailed statement. “After assessing the latest situation in the Miami-Dade County, and reviewing the preventative measures the hotel-venue has been taking, we have decided to continue with our 2016 Global Credit Products conference. We are expecting high attendance but understand clients should participate at their own discretion.”
Many banks hold annual leveraged finance conferences to bring together bankers, investors and borrowers. Goldman Sachs held its first-ever leveraged finance conference in May. Morgan Stanley will host former US President George W. Bush at its November leveraged finance conference in New Orleans and Deutsche Bank is holding its annual leveraged finance conference in Arizona in late September.
Earvin “Magic” Johnson, the former star of the Los Angeles Lakers basketball team, is the keynote speaker at a dinner at the Credit Suisse conference next week.
The conference will cover topics including leverage finance capital markets, high yield, loan and investment-grade trading, the outlook for mergers and acquisitions, the US election, credit exchange-traded funds and derivatives, according to Miller’s e-mail. More than 90 companies will be available to meet with investors one-on-one.
The bank is expecting a “highly attended and very successful conference,” Miller said in the e-mail.
(Reporting by Kristen Haunss; Editing by Michelle Sierra and Jon Methven)