Credit Suisse Buries Mortgage Selling Scandal

DEUTSCHE Bank and Credit Suisse said yesterday that they have agreed with USA authorities to pay billions of dollars to settle probes into the sales of toxic mortgage bonds that contributed to the 2008 financial crisis.

Deutsche Bank rallied on Friday after it settled allegations with the US Department of Justice of mis-selling mortgage-backed securities between 2005 and 2007.

Deutsche, helmed by Yorkshireman John Cryan, has agreed in principle to pay $7.2 billion, comprising $3.1 billion in civil penalties and $4.1 billion set aside to help customers who lost out.

Credit Suisse has also agreed to pay $5.28 billion to resolve a department probe of similar alleged actions. On Thursday, the Justice Department filed civil charges against Barclays after settlement negotiations broke down.

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In Frankfurt, Deutsche Bank shares gained 0.7 percent, while Credit Suisse stood 1.1 percent lower, after slipping from an initial upward bounce of two percent. The news has fuelled hopes that RBS' potential fine in the United States would be smaller than feared.

According to a recent memo released by the bank, "By agreeing this settlement, we are removing a long-standing uncertainty from Deutsche Bank". To date, large lenders in the United States and Europe have agreed to fork over almost $50 billion in fines and consumer relief to the US government to settle claims of wrongdoing.

Germany's biggest bank still faces U.S. probes into other matters and potentially expensive civil suits - liabilities that chief executive officer John Cryan has set out to resolve as he seeks to restore confidence.

Credit Suisse will pony up more than $5.2 billion while Deutsche Bank will pay $7.2 billion.

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The consumer relief portions of the settlements are typically far less painful for the banks than the straight payments since they are paid out over a period of years and not in cash.

However, the British bank on Friday rejected the USA authorities' complaint, stating it would "vigorously defend" the case.

The Bank now expects to record pre-tax charges of approximately $1.17 billion in the financial results for the fourth quarter as a outcome of the civil monetary penalty.

"Barclays considers that the claims made in the complaint are disconnected from the facts", the London-listed lender said.

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