Deutsche Bank is not concerned it will be a takeover target despite a steep sell-off in its stock late last week after a two-day raid of its offices as part of a money laundering investigation.
Reuters, citing Christian Sewing, the CEO of Deutsche Bank, reported the CEO told German weekly paper Bild am Sonntag that the company isn’t at risk of a takeover. “I don’t have any indication of that,” Sewing said, according to Reuters. “We are on track to make our first profit for three years. It is only a matter of time before this progress is reflected in the share price.” He said media reports that the bank might consider a merger with UBS or Commerzbank were “fictions.” As for the two day raid, the executive said he doesn’t have a problem with it.
“I want this matter to be cleared up as soon as possible,” said Sewing, referring to an investigation into the activities of unnamed Deutsche Bank employees who have allegedly helped clients set up offshore firms so they can launder money. “It’s about two employees who, at the time, helped to work through everything surrounding the issue of the Panama Papers. In my view, the presumption of innocence clearly applies until proven otherwise,” Sewing told the paper. “Since the publication of the Panama Papers in 2016 we have reviewed the whole issue and, in doing so, cooperated closely with the regulatory authorities. For us the case was concluded.” Sewing also said he was at peace with himself when asked if he made any mistakes, reported Reuters. “Of course, I would never say that I’m not making mistakes. But if I do, I correct them as quickly as possible.”
Late last week, federal authorities in Germany raided six offices of Deutsche Bank on Thursday morning, November 29, searching for evidence about money laundering and offshore tax havens. About 170 federal German prosecutors and police officers confiscated documents during the searches, and police vehicles lined the outside of the bank’s headquarters in central Frankfurt.