Frances Schwartzkopff and Christian Wienberg, 25 June 2021
Danske Bank A/S has been charged by Danish police for allegedly violating rules intended to protect investors from market manipulation.
Denmark’s biggest bank, which is separately being investigated in the U.S. and Europe amid an ongoing money-laundering case, says it received notice of preliminary charges from the Danish State Prosecutor for Serious Economic and International Crime, or SOIK. The case relates to two potential violations of market abuse regulations, according to an emailed statement on Friday.
Police are pursuing the case after Denmark’s Financial Supervisory Authority raised its concerns last year. The watchdog alleges that Danske routinely entered into agreements to buy or sell financial instruments without any change in ownership of the securities.
Danske’s chief compliance officer, Philippe Vollot, said the bank is cooperating with police to resolve the case, “which we take very seriously.” He also acknowledged that Danske “did not have adequate market monitoring in place,” but that its own assessment doesn’t indicate there was any “intentional wrongdoing or any harm to customers or market participants.” The bank has made “significant investments” since 2019 to avoid a repeat, he said.
That said, Danske expects the case to drag on for “quite a long time,” its head of investor relations, Claus Jensen, said during an analyst call on Friday.