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(Bloomberg) -- Saxo Bank A/S has been ordered by the Danish financial regulator to provide a detailed report of its handling of franc trades on Jan. 15 after some of its clients complained to the watchdog.
The Copenhagen-based broker has confirmed it retroactively repriced trades conducted in the half hour after the Swiss National Bank abandoned its euro peg, but only told clients it was doing so 12 hours later. Saxo says it risks losing as much as $107 million, a figure that won’t leave it in breach of capital requirements.
The Danish Financial Supervisory Authority “is currently in close dialogue with Saxo Bank and will require the bank to provide a detailed report of the actions taken during and after the incident,” the regulator said in an e-mailed statement received today.
Saxo has defended its actions arguing the lack of “reliable liquidity” after the franc went into free float gave it no choice but to reprice its trades. The bank filled what it described as an “abnormal” volume of about 818 million francs ($910 million) in just 30 minutes. That compares with Saxo’s total assets of $4.2 billion in 2013, the latest year for which figures are available.
Saxo is now bracing itself for lawsuits, Chief Financial Officer Steen Blaafalk said.
The bank “is still liaising with each client on an individual basis to clarify what is possible with respect to each client’s situation and agreeing an individual plan of an action for the repayment,” he said this week.
Censeo Asset Management, based in Vienna, said this week it “can’t recognize the lawfulness of” Saxo’s decision to reprice its franc trades and will help its clients challenge the decision if a review shows the action is “questionable under Austrian law.” The company had offered clients a Saxo-brokered franc product.
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