Article: Danske Bank CEO Quits Amid Dutch Probe of Laundering Allegations

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Danske Bank CEO Quits Amid Dutch Probe of Laundering Allegations

Frances Schwartzkopff and Joost Akkermans, 19 April 2021

Danske Bank A/S is replacing Chris Vogelzang as chief executive officer after a Dutch money-laundering investigation implicated the former ABN Amro Bank NV executive, complicating the Danish lender’s efforts to get past its own scandal.

Vogelzang, who had run Denmark’s biggest bank for less than two years, will be replaced by Danske’s head of risk management, Carsten Egeriis. The move comes after authorities in the Netherlands named Vogelzang “a suspect in connection with their investigations of potential violations of Dutch legislation relating to the prevention of money laundering at ABN Amro,” Danske said. Continue reading “Article: Danske Bank CEO Quits Amid Dutch Probe of Laundering Allegations”

Article: ABN Amro Sees Quarterly Loss After $574 Million Settlement

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ABN Amro Sees Quarterly Loss After $574 Million Settlement

Joost Akkermans, 19 April 2021

ABN Amro Bank NV agreed to pay 480 million euros ($574 million) to end a Dutch investigation that found “serious shortcomings” in the lender’s processes to combat money laundering.

The amount will be booked in the first quarter and the lender expects a “modest” loss as a result, according to a statement on Monday. As part of the settlement, ABN Amro will pay a fine of 300 million euros and a disgorgement of 180 million euros, with the latter reflecting costs the lender had saved, according to the Dutch public prosecutor. Continue reading “Article: ABN Amro Sees Quarterly Loss After $574 Million Settlement”

Article: The war against money-laundering is being lost

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The war against money-laundering is being lost

The Economist, 12 April 2021

The global system for financial crime is hugely expensive and largely ineffective.

YET ANOTHER bank is preparing to face the music over alleged failings in its efforts to curb flows of dirty money. In the coming weeks NatWest, one of Britain’s largest lenders, is set to appear in court in London to respond to charges that it failed to properly scrutinise a gold-dealing client that deposited £365m ($502m) with the bank—£264m of it in cash. Continue reading “Article: The war against money-laundering is being lost”

Article: Danske could absorb $3.3B money-laundering fine and still hit own CET1 target

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Danske could absorb $3.3B money-laundering fine and still hit own CET1 target

Sanne WassRehan Ahmad,  29 March 2021

Danske Bank A/S’ capital levels and projected first-quarter earnings imply that it could withstand a money-laundering fine of 20.9 billion kroner, or $3.3 billion, today and still achieve its management common equity Tier 1 ratio target of 16%, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence estimates.

Even a penalty of more than double that size would still leave Denmark’s largest lender above its current regulatory requirement, the analysis found. “There is a long way to go before the fine becomes an issue for the bank’s capital ratio,” said Jyske Bank equity analyst Anders Vollesen in an interview.

Danske’s material capital buffer is driving down risk associated with the outcome of its Baltic dirty money scandal, according to analysts, with some even seeing scope for distribution of excess capital to shareholders through generous dividends or share buybacks once the case is settled. Continue reading “Article: Danske could absorb $3.3B money-laundering fine and still hit own CET1 target”

Article: Newly Obtained Audit Report Details How Shady Clients from Around the World Moved Billions Through Estonia

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Newly Obtained Audit Report Details How Shady Clients from Around the World Moved Billions Through Estonia

Holger Roonemaa and Oliver Kund, KYC360News, 12 March 2021

On a warm Monday morning in June 2014, two auditors from Estonia’s financial regulator stepped into the Tallinn office of Danske Bank, armed with a single piece of graph paper handwritten with the names of 18 of its clients, and demanded to see their records.

At first glance, the customers on the list sounded boring. They were mostly obscure trading companies with generic names like Hilux Services and Polux Management. But the auditors — who had been tipped off by a police unit that tracks financial crime — didn’t have to dig too deep before things got very strange.

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