Business News in Brief: Multiple investigations launched into Danske Bank

It’s also been a bad week at the office for Tryk, Central Midtjylland and the 1,000 kroner note

Barely an hour goes by without another revelation about the Danske Bank money-laundering scandal, which has seen around 1.5 trillion kroner pass through its Estonian branch to line the pockets of criminals, rogue governments and crooked politicians.

The EU Commission, along with three US authorities – Justice Department, Ministry of Finance and the American Financial Supervisory Authority – have all this week declared their intention to investigate the matter, as well as Britain’s National Crime Agency.

FSA warnings ignored
Additionally, the EU Commission also intends to investigate the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA), and it has enlisted the help of the European Bank Public Authority.

The FSA might feel aggrieved as it warned Danske Bank and Russia’s central bank in 2007, 2009, 2010, 2013, 2014 and 2015 about the suspicious transactions, during which time an estimated 1.5 trillion kroner was laundered – a sum that is 215 times the original estimate of 7 billion kroner reported in March 2017.

Net is widening
Meanwhile, Deutsche Bank and Citigroup are also facing some heat over allegations they have been involved in the Estonian money laundering.

And a US law firm, Bronstein, Gewirtz & Grossman, is preparing a lawsuit against Danske Bank on behalf of some of the bank’s US-based shareholders.

DR preparing redundancy package for 400 workers
Only 60 DR employees have so far accepted a voluntary redundancy package, leaving the national broadcaster with the job of laying off another 340 workers. The deadline to take the package expired on Monday. Around 22 of the 60 were journalists. The rest of the redundancies will be confirmed on October 10.

Tryk’s acquisition of Alka deferred over concerns
The Konkurrence- og Forbrugerstyrelsen competition and consumer authority has not approved  Tryk’s acquisition of the insurance company Alka, instead choosing to defer its decision. It is believed the authority is concerned about the effect of the transaction on the dynamics of the Danish insurance market. Alka has around 380,000 customers, and the acquisition would boost Tryk’s market share in Denmark to more than 20 percent.

Region’s costly lay-offs
Central Midtjylland’s decision to lay off three of its executives will end up costing it 8 million kroner, reports TV2. According to the contract of regional head Jacob Stengaard Madsen, for example, he won’t formally leave his post until 15 October 2019. For 12-and-a-half months he will be paid his salary, amounting to 2,416,667 kroner, along with a redundancy handshake of 2,230,769 kroner. The settlement is in line with what is stipulated in the Central Agreement for Regional Employees.

Foreign credit cards hit society much harder than Danish ones
Payments using foreign credit cards end up costing society ten times as much as Danish ones, according to a study by Nationalbanken. Just the transaction itself, 2.40 kroner compared to 13.70 kroner using a foreign one, is considerably cheaper. Nevertheless, many banks continue to push foreign cards onto their customers instead of Danish ones, the report concluded.

Time up for the 1,000 kroner note?
Banks interest organisation Finans Danmark has recommended withdrawing the Danish 1,000 kroner note from circulation due to its widespread usage by criminals. Parliament recently ruled that it will no longer be possible to use 500-euro notes in Denmark.



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