The Swedish Economic Crime Authority, EBM, raided the Stockholm head office of Swedbank on Wednesday, as part of a money laundering investigation.
In the evening, EBM said a review had been conducted of a number of public statements and other information provided by executives from 23 October 2018 through to 20 February 2019 and that Swedbank appears “to have spread misleading information to the public and market about what the bank knew about suspected money laundering within Swedbank in the Baltic States”. The investigation has now been widened to include suspected fraud.
Swedbank CEO Birgitte Bonnesen said it had been a tough day for the bank and that she was doing everything in her power to handle the situation, adding that “no unit or individual” at the bank had been charged with committing a crime.
Earlier in the day, state broadcaster SVT reported that Swedbank was under investigation by the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) for having allegedly misled US authorities. The bank had apparently failed to inform DFS that it had customers who could be linked to Mossback Fonseca, the Panamanian law firm involved in a tax avoidance scheme.
Swedbank shares closed 11.9 per cent down on Wednesday, and the bank has now lost more than a quarter of its stock market value, since news of the scandal broke in February.
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