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Commerzbank sends interim report to German authorities

A pedestrian walks past a branch of Commerzbank located in its headquarters before the bank's annual news conference in Frankfurt, Germany, February 12, 2016.      REUTERS/Ralph Orlowski/File Photo



Commerzbank AG said it’s handed German tax authorities an interim report on possible tax-minimising trades and is preparing a final assessment.
The bank is in “close communication” with officials, spokeswoman Margarita Thiel said an in e-mailed statement. The report concerns so-called cum-ex stock trades made since 2003.
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung
reported that Commerzbank had received information about illegitimate tax-saving trades for foreign funds. This trading was done around
dividend record dates for foreign funds.
However, the bank has the complete knowledge about the “isolated cases” of the trades, the paper reported.
Germany’s government is looking at allegations that banks used a scheme to let clients reduce capital-gains tax by exploiting a legal loophole. Commerzbank, based in Frankfurt, said last week that it ensures “through comprehensive internal systems and controls that all trades are in line with the applicable law.”
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, responding to a separate report about Commerzbank’s use of so-called cum-cum trades, said last week in Berlin there’s an “excessive use that we don’t believe is legitimate.”
The FAZ newspaper said last week that Commerzbank’s report found
evidence of cum-cum trades that the bank wound down between 2003 and 2008, and also of cum-ex trades that are today regarded as illegitimate.
Commerzbank is Germany’s second-largest bank, holding a nationwide network of branch offices, numerous offshore branch offices and representations in more than 50 countries globally which employs a total of 51,782 employees as of June 2014.
It offers its clients retail and commercial financing services, investment banking services, asset management, and private banking services.
Commerzbank was founded in 1870 by individual and merchant bankers in Hamburg, Germany.
Ship owner C. Woermann was the first chairman of the super-visory board of Commerz- und Disconto-Bank from 1870. The bank grew through a series of over 50 mergers, acquisitions and restructures in the following period through hyperinflation and the accompanied difficulties in the German economy. In 1940, the name Commerzbank Aktiengesellschaft, by which the bank was generally known, was officially adopted.

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