Germany’s BaFin looking into possible insider trading of CureVac shares
Reuters, 21 June 2021
BERLIN, June 21 (Reuters) – German financial watchdog BaFin is investigating possible insider trading of vaccine maker’s CureVac (5CV.DE) shares, which fell after the biotech firm announced its COVID-19 vaccine proved only 47% effective, Rheinische Post newspaper reported on Monday.
BaFin will investigate whether employees at CureVac or Bayer could have used their insider knowledge of the vaccine study results and sold shares in good time, the newspaper added. Continue reading “Article: Germany’s BaFin looking into possible insider trading of CureVac shares”
Deutsche Bank Revamps Controls as New Lapses Threaten Turnaround
Steven Arons, 15 June 2021
Deutsche Bank AG revamped the units seeking to detect and prevent financial crimes after a number of recent compliance issues risk undermining progress in Chief Executive Officer Christian Sewing’s turnaround plan.
Chief Administrative Officer Stefan Simon, in a memo to employees Tuesday, announced a reorganization of his business into six units, with the aim of reshaping the bank’s anti financial crime efforts. As part of the changes, Mary Kirwan, a former Credit Suisse Group AG executive, and Jan-Gerrit Iken from Commerzbank AG will join. Continue reading “Article: Deutsche Bank Revamps Controls as New Lapses Threaten Turnaround”
Wirecard: German Parliament slams Scholz and Merkel
Reuters, 07 June 2021
A committee of lawmakers in the Bundestag has published its inquiry into the Wirecard fraud affair. The damaging report comes months before Germany’s general election.
The public inquiry into the Wirecard scandal published its concluding report on Monday, criticizing Germany’s Finance Minister Olaf Scholz and Chancellor Angela Merkel.
The parliamentary committee consisting of opposition lawmakers ended a monthslong investigation into the scandal with the publication of a 675-page draft report. Continue reading “Article: Wirecard: German Parliament slams Scholz and Merkel”
Fed Warned Deutsche Bank Over Anti-Money-Laundering Backsliding
Patricia Kowsmann and Jenny Strasburg, 30 May 2021
The Federal Reserve told Deutsche Bank AG DB 0.40% in recent weeks that the lender is failing to address persistent shortcomings in its anti-money-laundering controls, according to people familiar with the matter.
The Fed’s frustration has escalated to a point that the bank could be fined, the people said.
Deutsche Bank has poured massive resources into addressing repeated shortcomings and penalties related to allowing suspect transactions. The Fed told Deutsche Bank that instead of making progress, the German lender with a large Wall Street presence is backsliding. The regulator has said that some of the anti-money-laundering control problems require immediate attention, according to the people. Continue reading “Article: Fed Warned Deutsche Bank Over Anti-Money-Laundering Backsliding”
N26 faces BaFin scrutiny over money laundering failures
Finextra, 12 May 2021
German financial regulator BaFin has ordered mobile bank N26 to fix problems with its IT monitoring and customer due diligence to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing.
The watchdog is appointing a special commissioner to monitor the fintech giant’s compliance with the order to implement appropriate internal controls and safeguards and comply with general due diligence requirements.
N26 has also been told to ensure that it has the adequate personnel, technical and organisational resources to comply with its obligations under anti-money laundering law.The order comes two years after BaFin first reprimanded N26 for lax anti-money laundering controls.
It also comes as BaFin tightens up oversight in the wake of the Wirecard scandal, which cost the regulator’s head, Felix Hufeld, his job. N26 says that online criminal activity has soared around the world since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic and that it is working closely with the appointed commissioner.
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Opinion: Wirecard fraud shows it’s time to regulate the regulators
Kate Ferguson, 29 April 2021
What would you do if you were confident you could get away with it? Perhaps you’d rob a bank, or have a wild affair. Or maybe you’d subsist on nothing but candy floss for the rest of your life.
The chances are you won’t, though. The risk of being arrested, destroying your marriage or becoming a diabetic are simply too high. For most of us, the question is destined to remain hypothetical. After all, life has taught us that bad behavior does not generally go unpunished.
Generally doesn’t mean always
There are notable exceptions to the rule, though. In recent years, three major scandals in Germany have provided pleasingly concrete answers to the question. Continue reading “Article: Opinion: Wirecard fraud shows it’s time to regulate the regulators”
Angela Merkel defends lobbying for disgraced Wirecard
Ben Knight, 23 April 2021
The German chancellor has appeared at a parliamentary inquiry to defend her decision to lobby on behalf of the disgraced banking firm Wirecard in China. The scandal is one of Germany’s biggest ever fraud cases.
Chancellor Angela Merkel has told the German Bundestag that there was no reason to believe that Wirecard was committing fraud in 2019, when she lobbied on behalf of the now insolvent Bavarian company during an official trip to China.
“Despite the press reports, there was no reason to assume there were serious irregularities at Wirecard at the time,” she told a parliamentary inquiry during a hearing on Friday. Continue reading “Article: Angela Merkel defends lobbying for disgraced Wirecard”
The ex-convict’s tale: Germany’s role in Wirecard scandal under microscope
John O’donnell, Tom Sims, 23 April 2021
In February 2019, after a steep drop in Wirecard’s share price, German authorities launched criminal probes into short-sellers and journalists who had accused the company of fraud, and banned investors from betting against the company.
Documents seen by Reuters show for the first time that the only independent information – beyond Wirecard’s representations – received by Munich prosecutors who launched the criminal probes was a third-hand account of events from a convicted money launderer, Daniel James Harris.
The rationale that led to the decisions of prosecutors and regulators to launch the criminal probes and short-selling ban, and whether they were overzealous in supporting Wirecard, are central issues being investigated by a parliamentary inquiry into the company’s collapse in Germany’s biggest post-war fraud scandal. Continue reading “Article: The ex-convict’s tale: Germany’s role in Wirecard scandal under microscope”
The Weird, Extremely German Origins of the Wirecard Scandal
Adrian Daub, 21 April 2021
German scandals are not like other scandals. The bouquet of a classic German scandal contains unmistakable notes: a rabbit-hole impenetrability, the implication of an entire guilt-ridden society, and, most importantly, a sense that the controversy says something essential about Germany as a whole. German scandals are collectivized. They are about a belief in German difference, for good or ill.
The rise and fall of the financial services giant Wirecard is such a scandal. Wirecard, whose products facilitated e-commerce payment transactions, was the rare German startup that seemed primed to become a “global player”—a phrase with special resonance in a country that, despite all evidence to the contrary, still perceives itself as being small-time. The company was founded in 1999, survived the dotcom-bubble, began a massive expansion into Asia in the middle of the financial crisis, and, later, began another expansion into the Middle East. Continue reading “Article: The Weird, Extremely German Origins of the Wirecard Scandal”
German Regulator Accuses Deutsche Bank Board Member Of Insider Trading Linked To Wirecard
TYLER DURDEN, 20 April 2021
For a minute there, it appeared that Credit Suisse might have snatched Deutsche Bank’s crown as the most dysfunctional bank in Europe as the Swiss lender struggled with the fallout from the Archegos blowup and the collapse of Greensill (a scandal that has set off a massive corruption scandal in the UK, and triggered renewed calls for regulatory reform in the European financial system). CS has announced billions of dollars worth of losses tied to the scandals, fired its head of risk and nearly half a dozen other senior employees, and taken other steps in an attempt at penance. But on Monday, Deutsche Bank, which seemingly can’t go more than couple of quarters without a scandal, has found itself in the headlines once again. Continue reading “Article: German Regulator Accuses Deutsche Bank Board Member Of Insider Trading Linked To Wirecard”
Germany says FinCEN money laundering revelations are not new
Holger Hansen and Andreas Rinke, 21 September 2020
BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s finance ministry said on Monday that a slew of news reports about money laundering among global banks including Deutsche Bank DBKGn.DE did not appear to contain revelations which were unknown.
“To the best of our knowledge, the cases with a German connection have been dealt with and the necessary consequences have been drawn,” a spokeswoman said.
German regulator BaFin is a unit of Germany’s Finance Ministry.
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The woman shaking up Wall Street
Safi Thind, SquareMile, 7 February 2020
“Valeant had a certain reputation within the industry,” she says. “I knew it was already engaged in unethical, potentially fraudulent practice. Pharmaceuticals are a very established industry, when someone tries to disrupt it and post unusual numbers, there’s probably something wrong.”
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German watchdog updates market manipulation case against Wirecard
Douglas Busvine, 23 June 2020
BERLIN, June 23 (Reuters) – Germany’s financial watchdog said on Tuesday it had filed an updated case against Wirecard , saying the collapsed payment company’s disclosure of a $2.1 billion financial hole showed it had sought to mislead markets.
The regulator Bafin said it had filed a follow-up to an earlier complaint with Munich prosecutors as it now suspected Wirecard’s accounts for 2016, 2017 and 2018 had misstated revenues and assets.
“This also strengthens the suspicion that the information contained in its financial reports sent false signals for Wirecard’s share price and thus violated a ban on market manipulation,” Bafin said in a statement.
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Prosecutors search Wirecard premises in market manipulation probe
Thomas Escritt, 05 June 2020
BERLIN, June 5 (Reuters) – Prosecutors in Munich said they had searched the premises of financial services company Wirecard and opened proceedings against its management board as part of a market manipulation probe by BaFin, Germany’s financial regulator.
In a statement on Friday, prosecutors said the company was suspected of having issued misleading information which may have impacted Wirecard’s share price between March 12 and April 22.
Wirecard confirmed in a statement that its premises had been searched as part of an investiugation targeting its management board. It said it was cooperating fully with the investigation.
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