No dividend for SEB shareholders after earnings fall

Sweden’s SEB bank announced plans on Thursday to raise 1.4 billion ($1.8 billion) in new capital and forgo paying a 2008 dividend following a steep drop in earnings last year.

No dividend for SEB shareholders after earnings fall

Net profit fell by 26 percent to 10.04 billion kronor ($1.2 billion) in 2008. At the operating level net earnings dropped 27 percent to 12.47 billion kronor.

In the October-December period, net earnings declined 7.0 percent to 3.5 billion kronor despite a 27 percent increase in net banking income.

The bank said in a statement it would carry out a capital increase worth 15 billion kronor and would pay no 2008 dividend in order to improve its capital base, which currently stands at 19.5 billion kronor.

“In a year of unprecedented turbulence, we have continued to generate growth, reflecting a solid client base,” said SEB chief executive Annika Falkengren.

“With the proposed measures to strengthen our capital base SEB is well-equipped to confront macro-economic difficulties.”

The bank employs 22,000 people and operates in Scandinavia, the Baltic states and Germany.


Police to investigate Nordea bank over money laundering

Danish police will investigate the Swedish bank Nordea after a year-long probe by regulators into money laundering led to "criticism" of its procedures, the bank said Friday.

Police to investigate Nordea bank over money laundering
Photo: Marcus Ericsson / TT

Detectives will examine how money laundering rules were followed at the bank's Danish subsidiary and could result in “sanctions”, Nordea said in a statement.

“We realize that we initially underestimated the complexity and the time it takes to change our procedures,” said Nordea chief executive Casper von Koskull.

The bank added that 850 Nordea employees are currently involved in the fight against money laundering which the bank plans to increase to 1,150 by the end of the year.

In May 2015 the bank was fined 50 million kronor (€5.4 million euros) – the maximum possible – by Swedish regulators who accused Nordea of “not following money laundering rules for several years” and failing to “evaluate the risks of (doing business with) certain clients”.