HSBC share price: UK banks to review FIFA-linked transactions

on Jun 2, 2015
Updated: Oct 21, 2019

HSBC Holdings Plc(LON:HSBA), Standard Chartered Plc (LON:STAN) and Barclays Plc (LON:BARC) are all conducting internal reviews of thousands of past transactions in relation to the FIFA bribery scandal in an attempt to identify the illegal movement of monies, sources cited by The Times said.

Last week the FBI arrested several high-ranking FIFA officials on charges of partaking in a scheme of corrupt payments that enabled more than $150 million in bribes be paid in exchange for “lucrative media and marketing rights.”
Numerous banks were noted as having been used in the payments of the bribes, including HSBC, Standard Chartered and Barclays.
US prosecutors intend to establishwhether banks were aware that they were aiding illegal activities.Thus far, however, there have been no assertions by US authorities that the banks knew of any impropriety with regard to the nature of payments made to FIFA officials, as outlined in the prosecution’s charges.According to Kelly Currie, acting US attorney for the eastern district of New York, “it’s too early to say whether there is any problematic behaviour.”
Although the banks are confident that they did everything they could to prevent money laundering, “moving $1m-$2m would not necessarily have raised red flags,” a bank official noted, according to The Times.
HSBC has not commented on the matter.
HSBC’s share price had shed 0.22 percent to 621.30p as of 09:50 BST today, underperforming the FTSE 100 blue chip benchmark which was up about 0.1 percent.The bank’s stock has climbed more than 11 percent from its mid-March low.
Falling afoul of the law in relation to money laundering has cost some banks dearly in recent times, adding to the imperative that they are perceived to be proactive in this area, particularly with a scandal of this size.
HSBC and StanChart have paid £1.3 billion and £650 million, respectively, in money laundering-related fines over the past three years.
HSBC is also currently under investigation by authorities in several countries after it was revealed earlier this year that the bank’s Swiss unit had assisted a large numbers of wealthy customers in avoiding taxes.
HSBC has since apologised for the then-inadequate compliance checks and lack of oversight at the Swiss unit, and has conceded that the scandal has been a costly blow to their reputation.
As of 08:09 BST, Tuesday, 02 June, HSBC Holdings plc share price is 624.20p.

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