Daily Management Review

EU to check German financial watchdog in connection with Wirecard scandal


Brussels will demand an audit against the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) for non-compliance with its responsibilities for the supervision of fintech company Wirecard AG, the collapse of which threatens investor confidence in the EU, Financial Times reports.

Leo Molatore
Leo Molatore
Valdis Dombrovskis, European Commission Executive Vice President responsible for financial services, said he would contact the European Securities Market Supervision Authority (ESMA) to evaluate BaFin's actions regarding Wirecard.

“We will ask ESMA to investigate whether there were gaps in supervision, and if so, to identify possible further steps. We need to clarify what went wrong,” said Dombrovskis, adding that he expects to receive an ESMA response no later than in mid July.

According to him, Brussels may initiate its own investigation into the banking regulator of Germany in the case of violation of EU legislation, if during the preliminary audit of ESMA, deficiencies are observed in BaFin's compliance with the block rules regarding control over the financial statements of listed companies.

On Thursday, Wirecard filed for bankruptcy with a Munich court “because of impending insolvency and excessive debt.” This decision was made after the audit found that the company’s accounts were missing €1.9 billion, which were previously indicated in the financial statements as an asset.

The Board of Governors of Wirecard suggested that these funds might not have existed at all. Former CEO Markus Braun, who resigned last week, was detained on Monday on suspicion of falsifying financial statements, but then released on bail in the amount of €5 million.

source: ft.com