During his time there, he led the bank to record profit in 2007. He also led the campaign to water down tougher regulations in Europe and devised measures aimed at saving the euro as chairman of the International Institute of Finance, a trade group based in Washington. 
He had planned to move from CEO "upstairs" to become chairman of the supervisory board, but after profits did not meet company targets the role was instead filled by Paul Achleitner, chief financial officer of Allianz. Ackermann had earlier announced the record figure of €10 billion before tax to shareholders, but in October of 2011 he was forced to admit that the financial crisis of 2008-2009 had made the goal unattainable. Investors were shocked, the stock fell, and the company had to eliminate some jobs.
Ackermann advised German Chancellor Angela Merkel and European officials during the financial crisis. He also traveled met with EU President Herman Van Rompuy and Luxembourg Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker in Brussels to advise them on a deal to tackle the sovereign-debt crisis.
Ackermann graduated from the University of St. Gallen (HSG).
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