Credit Suisse freezes $5 billion of Russian money due to U.S….

Credit Suisse freezes $5 billion of Russian money due to U.S….

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Brenna Hughes Neghaiwi, John O’Donnell

One of Switzerland’s largest banks, Credit Suisse, has frozen roughly 5 billion Swiss francs ($5 billion) of money linked to Russia to avoid falling foul of U.S. sanctions, according to its accounts, further increasing pressure on Moscow.

The move by Credit Suisse, which owned aircraft surrendered by Russian tycoon Oleg Deripaska and had lent money to Russian oligarch Viktor Vekselberg before the sanctions, underscores a widespread fear among banks of reprisals from Washington for working with targeted Russian individuals and entities.

For Russia’s elite, such steps could close off an important avenue for finance as well as a safe haven for billions of rubles of their wealth.

“Credit Suisse works with international regulators wherever it does business to ensure compliance with sanctions, including compliance with sanctions involving Russia,” said a spokeswoman for the bank, which did not identify the owners of the money.

Long popular with wealthy Russians for its combination of bank secrecy, political stability and glitzy ski resorts such as Zermatt and St. Moritz, Switzerland has become one of the most important destinations for money leaving Russia.

Roughly $6.2 billion, or 14 percent of total Russian cross-border outflows, went to Switzerland in 2017 — almost three times as much as went to the United States, according to Russian central bank data.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-credit-suisse-gp-sanctions/credit-suisse-freezes-5-billion-of-russian-money-due-to-u-s-sanctions-idUSKCN1L71LR


One of Switzerland’s largest banks, Credit Suisse, has frozen roughly 5 billion Swiss francs ($5 billion) of money linked to Russia to avoid falling foul of U.S. sanctions, according to its accounts, further increasing pressure on Moscow.

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