UBS Bank announced today that it has completed its takeover of rival Credit Suisse, creating a giant Swiss bank with a $1.6 trillion balance sheet and greater strength in wealth management.

Commenting on the biggest banking deal since the 2008 global financial crisis, UBS chief executive Sergio Ermotti and chairman Colm Kelleher said “this is the beginning of a new chapter”, in an open letter published by Swiss newspapers.

The group will oversee $5 trillion in assets, giving UBS, the world’s largest wealth manager, leadership in important markets that would otherwise take years of growth to reach. The merger also ends Credit Suisse’s 167-year history, which has been marred in recent years by scandals and losses.

The two banks employ a combined 120,000 people worldwide, although UBS has already said it will cut jobs to take advantage of synergies and cut costs.