BUSINESS

Deutsche Bank faces fraud probe

By 김연세
  • Published : Jan 19, 2011 - 19:30
  • Updated : Jan 19, 2011 - 19:30
FSS to demand criminal probe on stock trading


The Financial Supervisory Service plans to ask the prosecution to investigate Deutsche Bank AG and several individual investors for allegedly engaging in fraudulent stock trading, sources told The Korea Herald on Wednesday.

The financial regulator has completed its investigation into the Germany-based investment bank’s brokerage unit in Hong Kong. It plans to refer the case to the prosecution in the coming weeks, they said.

Deutsche Bank has been suspected of reaping about 100 billion won ($89.2 million) last November by intentionally pulling down prices by dumping a great number of shares on the Korea Exchange after purchasing a fund which guarantees high return when the prices plunge.

Its allegedly illegitimate stock trading has incurred huge losses of other investors and the scheduled punitive action by the Korean watchdog will come as a stern warning against foreign rule-violators including manipulators.
A Deutsche Bank AG logo is seen on one of the bank’s branches in Frankfurt, Germany. (Bloomberg)


“We will send the case to the prosecution. I expect the timing will be late January or February,” said a Financial Supervisory Service official.

“Unless the bank is acquitted after the prosecution’s investigation, it will also face banking disciplinary rules as well as the planned securities-related punishment,” he added.

The watchdog plans to make public details after convening a panel meeting of the Securities & Futures Commission in several weeks.

While the panel is destined to fine-tune the sanction level, it has been found that FSS officials have internally agreed on the necessity of reprimanding the kind of practices through criminal investigation.

Should the prosecution levy fines on Deutsche Bank, the FSS will be entitled to suspend part of its operations for one or several months.

There is also a possibility that the prosecution will demand imprisonment against the investment bank’s staffers who initiated the trading. The case also could be linked to business suspension under regulatory rules.

During the Nov. 11 trading session, the benchmark KOSPI index fell nearly 3 percent due mainly to foreigners’ massive selling.

The FSS and the Korea Exchange had confirmed that most foreign selling that day came from Deutsche Bank accounts.

According to the exchange, the bank was a top seller in most large-cap shares, such as Samsung Electronics, Hyundai Motor, and KB Financial Group.

KOSPI plunged 48 points to 1,914.73 during the last two-minutes ― between 2:59 p.m. and 3:01 p.m. ― on the day.

By Kim Yon-se (kys@heraldcorp.com)

(한글기사)

금감원, 도이치뱅크 주가조작 혐의로 검찰에 수사의뢰 방침

금융감독원은 지난 11월 불과 하루 사이 2조원 가량의 주식매도를 통해 국내 주식시장에서 1천억원 이상의 시세차익을 거둔 도이치뱅크 및 몇몇 관련자 등이 시세조종 또는 주가조작에 연루된 혐의를 포착하고 금명간 검찰에 수사를 의뢰할 방침이다.

금감원 관계자는 19일 이에 대한 조사를 마친 상태라며 조만간 증권선물위원회를 개최해 심의를 통해 최종결정을 내릴 예정이라고 밝혔다. 감독당국은 이 독일계 투자은행을 검찰에 고발하는 방안과 단순 수사기관(검찰) 통보 등 두 가지를 놓고 내부 의견을 조율하고 있다.

그러나 제재수위에 상관없이 도이치뱅크에 대한 검찰의 수사는 불가피할 전망이고 무혐의 처분을 받지 않는 한 기관 영업정지의 가능성도 배제할 수 없게 됐다.

이 은행 또는 관련자들이 최소 벌금형에 처해질 경우 금감원은 추가로 기관에 대한 제재에 착수할 수 있고 영업정지(1개월, 3개월, 6개월) 등의 처분을 내릴 수 있다.

지난 11월 11일 이 은행은 거래 마감 10분 전인 오후 2시 50분부터 계열사인 도이치증권 서울지점 등을 통해 삼성전자 및 현대차 등 대형주를 중심으로 대량 주식매도 주문을 쏟아냈다. 이 과정에서 주가가 급락할 시 고수익을 보장하는 투자상품 매매를 통해 400억원에 달하는 시세차익을 거뒀고 900억원 이상의 원-달러 환차익도 얻은 것으로 확인됐다.

금감원은 지난 12월 도이치증권 홍콩법인에 검사역들을 급파해 현지조사를 벌인 바 있다.