BNP board approves $8.9bn US settlement

GMT 03:08 2014 Monday ,30 June

Arab Today, arab today BNP board approves $8.9bn US settlement

BNP Paribas branch
New York - AFP

BNP Paribas's board of directors approved over the weekend a settlement with US authorities to pay a record $9 billion fine to avoid being tried for violating US embargoes.
The agreement is due to be announced Monday after markets close at the New York Stock Exchange around 4:00 pm (2000 GMT), sources close to the matter told AFP.
Another source said each one of the authorities involved -- the Justice Department and New York banking regulator Benjamin Lawsky -- will make their own announcement.
France's largest bank held a special meeting of its board in Paris over the weekend to discuss a compromise deal negotiated by the BNP's leadership with US authorities, another source said, speaking like the others on condition of anonymity.
BNP declined requests for comment.
The amicable agreement, reached after long months of talks, would see BNP pay an $8.9 billion fine, the largest ever brought by the United States against a foreign bank.
At least $2 billion will go to Lawsky, who is also impose temporary suspension of parts of BNP's dollar-handling business in the United States -- key to any major bank's US operations -- for all of 2015.
Sources said the suspension would take place progressively since BNP has operations underway.
The bank has until December 31 to find a replacement solution -- a bank that agrees to make dollar payments on its behalf.
The sanction concerns highly lucrative activities in the oil and gas market, also at the heart of the case against BNP.
A banking source said BNP had already approached banks in the United States.
Under the deal clinched with US authorities and regulators, BNP will also plead guilty to avoid an otherwise certain trial for the bank's deals from 2002 to 2009 with countries like Cuba, Iran and Sudan that are blacklisted by the United States.
The investigation probed more than $100 billion of transactions, finding that $30 billion of that amount were concealed in order to skirt the sanctions.

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