“It is different this time,” promised Christian Sewing, Deutsche Bank’s CEO. Plenty of grand plans have gone kaput at the German lender since predecessor Alfred Herrhausen imagined Deutsche as a global bank in 1989, shortly after the Berlin Wall fell.

As Sewing spoke, many Deutsche staff were having a Lehman moment. They were preparing for redundancy as their employer crashed out of full-service investment banking, albeit in better shape than the defunct Wall Street business...

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