The Curious Case of Anglo's Austrian Deposits - SBP

Very interesting article by Kathleen Barrington in today’s SBP (“The Curious Cae of Anglo Irish Bank and its Austrian Deposits”, Markets Page 3). It doesn’t say a lot beyond recounting the bald facts based on info in the public domain, but it is pregnant with innuendo. I’m sure we’ll have a link on it tomorrow, but for now this seems to be the broad outline of Barrington’s story:

Anglo owned a private Austrian bank for some period during the fake boom. 2001 is the earliest date in the article confirming Anglo’s ownership of this bank, so it obviously owned this subsidiary from some point in time before that.

Barrington says that this bank was important to Anglo’s depositing-gathering operation for many years - reflected in the fact that a board member of the Austrian operation was placed on the Anglo board in 2001.

On September 5 2008 Anglo announced that it was selling this bank to Swiss banking group Valartis. The sale was completed on December 19, 2008 - the day after Sean Fitzpatrick resigned as Anglo Chairman.

Barrington points out that 2008 would have been a very odd time to sell a deposit-generating subsidiary like this given the dire need Anglo had for cash at that time. The sale resulted in the loss of a large amount of deposit capital, Barrington asserts - a total of €600m according to Anglo’s 2009 Annual Report.

Indeed, it appears that Seanie was so keen to sell this Austrian operation that he even leant Valartis money to buy the business from Anglo.

What was the nature of this Austrian bank? Barrington says it had about 4,000 private customers managing about €1.6b for them. Moreover, this bank was subject to Austrian derogations from the EU Savings Directive such that the identities of its customers did not need to the revealed to the authorities. Privacy seemed to be the defining characteristic of the operation.

Barington’s money shot comes in one small para near the end of the piece and is related to this high level of confidentiality:

In the piece, the points Barrington seems most at pains to convey are the importance of the deposits to Anglo in 2008, the extreme confidentiality of the the Austrian subsidiary and Sean Fitzpatrick’s unusual anxiety to sell the business.

PSST! The Scoop On Austrian Money Secrets: Ironclad Secrecy, First-Class Amenities…And (If You Qualify) Instant Citizenship ~ by Mark Nestmann → … stria.html
December 2005

Probe into Italy mafia money laundering → … -pqst.html

Local Press Release – Sale of Austrian Private Banking Subsidiary → … diary.html

Alan Dukes should be perfectly well aware of any monies transferred from Anglo Dublin to Anglo Austria, he can run a report anytime and can investigate the activities of Anglo staff who fronted for Anglo Austria in the Anglo ‘private clients’ section :slight_smile:

He would be well advised to look at inbound transfers from Anglo Austria too :slight_smile:

Anglo Irish Bank sells Austrian private banking subsidiary to Swiss group → … 4646.shtml

Anglo Irish Bank - The History →


I’ll repeat my questions - who are the borrowers, what did they borrow for and how much do they owe?

It sounds awfully like looting…


This is very interesting. I remember being in a meeting with Anglo executives about 4 years ago and the topic of Banking in Austria came up (cant remember why). One of tha anglo guys mentioned that when they bought the Austrian operation they expected the considerable deposits to leave over time but they never did. He mentioned that they were pay nearly no interest on the deposits to the customers, they just sat there earning nothing and no one ever transferred them from the Bank.

Very strange, I thought at the time.

Then there’s the whole Iraq connection.

LOL Gavin :smiley: , what Iraq connection ??? There was the IRA money laundering angle in the early 1990s of course but that was not the bank itself as much as their largest shareholder.

Someone could say ‘the alien connection’ and, in the context of anglo, it could not be dismissed off-hand !

Ha Ha :laughing: Are you being serious? Was he winking when he told that tale?
A professional banker couldn’t figure that one out?

It’s either untaxed money from rich Germans or really dodgy money from Italy.

Nope not that :wink:

Ve have vays of making you talk Gavin !

Seannie selling customer deposits when the anglo group later that month would do a dodgy transaction with ILP to turn interbank loans into customer deposits (still no arrests!).

There is a possibility that people, who owe Anglo money, have stashed money in this Vienna operation. And whereas these borrowers may pass losses to the taxpayer, they could have their secret funds safely tucked away.

You won’t get this information from Valartis, though it may be possible to run a query on Anglo’s transaction database to identify transfers to the vienna bank.

Albert Reynolds and associates and the Oil for Food program…

Italian money goes to Switzerland, Slovenia, Croatia and Malta. German money to Switzerland, Luxembourg and the Netherlands. Lichtenstein used to be the preferred final resting place for German money but those days seem to be over. Austria is for the Eastern Europeans and money that needs to buried deeper than is possible in Switzerland.

That query would be exactly what I have in mind, I would run a further set of queries on funds that magicked out of that bank into Anglo over the years and for whose benefit.