Bank Leumi faces a billion-shekel fine imposed by the U.S. for alleged money laundering, according to media reports.
Federal investigators determined that the bank’s American branches made illegal transactions to clients’ accounts without paying taxes, as prescribed by recently-passed U.S. laws to curb money laundering.
The bank acknowledged on Sunday that is in advanced stages of negotiations with the U.S. Department of Justice to resolve the matter.
The provision to cover payment of the fine will be booked by Leumi in the second quarter, which will, of course, adversely affect results for the quarter.
For the first quarter, Bank Leumi reported a net profit of NIS 625 million, compared with NIS 570 million in the first quarter of 2013, representing a rise of 9.6%. The rise was mainly thanks to a NIS 124 million reduction in the credit losses item and a smaller tax provision.