International Financial Law Prof Blog

Editor: William Byrnes
Texas A&M University
School of Law

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Credit Suisse Caught up in Espírito Santo Mess

MI-CE554A_ESPIR_G_20140817170737According to numerous stories, it is reported that Credit Suisse helped sell billions of dollars of securities that were issued by offshore investment vehicles and then sold to retail customers of Portugal's Banco Espírito Santo SA.  According to the Wall Street Journal, "those investment products are at the center of an unfolding scandal. Banco Espírito Santo was bailed out and broken up this month. Other parts of the Espírito Santo group have filed for bankruptcy amid alleged fraud and accounting problems. In addition to sinking the Portuguese stock market, the episode has undermined confidence in the European banking sector, analysts say. ...

Credit Suisse said in a statement that it had no role in selling or distributing the investments to customers. "Credit Suisse has no visibility as to any onward distribution by the BES branches or subsidiaries," the Swiss bank said."

The article does a good job desribing the multi-level mess that was designed to hide and transfer profits and losses among various entities.

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