– We want to continue being transparent and have now presented our historical data for the Baltic region in more detail. We have been perceptive to signals of foul play and taken action, when needed. In the comprehensive analysis that we have made of our business in the Baltics, we have not seen that SEB has been used for money laundering in a systematic way. Still, at any given time, all banks are subjected to the risks that financial crime entail, says Johan Torgeby, President and CEO.
From 2006 and onwards, SEB has been working in a structured and determined way, in order to reduce the risk of being exploited in money laundering activities in the Baltic countries. After receiving criticism from the Estonian financial supervisory authority and information from another external source in 2006, the bank took several active decisions in order to reduce risk exposure related to money laundering. A large number of customer relations were ended. As new information has emerged, SEB has continuously ended customer relations and has been reporting suspicious activities to relevant financial police.
SEB has conducted a thorough analysis of each individual customer relationship and categorized these based on the bank's knowledge of their operations and payment flows, with an increased focus on Estonia, since that is where a majority of the transactions took place.
The category “low-transparency-customers” consists of customers whose historical payment flows to a large part do not meet today’s standards regarding transparency or linkage to authentic business activity. Approximately 95 percent of these historical low-transparency-flows stem from Estonia. These types of flows have declined early on in the period analysed and have, thereby, made up a small and diminishing part of the total payment flows from non-resident customers. These flows can not be equated to confirmed money laundering activities, but there is rather an increased risk for money laundering here.
SEB's comprehensive review covers the bank's customers, processes, risk culture, systems and transaction volumes during the period 2008-2018 and the bank's statements are based on these reviews. The review is part of the basis for the investigation conducted by Sweden's financial supervisory authority in collaboration with its Baltic counterparts. In the attached graph, the internal analysis for the years 2008-2018, has been supplemented with data from 2005-2007.
SEB wants to give everyone who follows the bank equal, accurate and transparent information. If new relevant information that SEB has not been aware of before emerges, the bank will take action.
For further information, please contact
Frank Hojem, Head of Corporate Communication
+46 70 763 99 47
This is information that Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken AB (publ.) is obliged to make public pursuant to the EU Market Abuse Regulation. The information was submitted for publication, through the agency of the contact persons set out above, at 17.30 CET, on 26 November 2019.
SEB is a leading Nordic financial services group with a strong belief that entrepreneurial minds and innovative companies are key in creating a better world. SEB takes a long-term perspective and supports its customers in good times and bad. In Sweden and the Baltic countries, SEB offers financial advice and a wide range of financial services. In Denmark, Finland, Norway, Germany and UK the bank's operations have a strong focus on corporate and investment banking based on a full-service offering to corporate and institutional clients. The international nature of SEB's business is reflected in its presence in some 20 countries worldwide. At 30 September 2019, the Group's total assets amounted to SEK 3,046bn while its assets under management totalled SEK 1,943bn. The Group has around 15,000 employees. Read more about SEB at http://www.sebgroup.com.