German lender Deutsche Bank’s 2018 net profit fell by 65% and revenue by 9% in the third quarter of 2018 as a result of its legacy as a lender that played a major role in triggering the 2008 financial crisis, as well as its connection to Danske Bank Estonia, a Tallinn-based lender that was the hub of a massive €206 billion money laundering scheme involving customers from Russia and other former Soviet republics, including Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Azerbaijan.
Deutsche’s new CEO, Christian Sewing, claimed on October 25 that the lender remains on track to post a 2018 profit while adding that Deutsche Bank plans to focus on its core business in the European Union.
Sewing, however, failed to address the fact that the lender continues to shed jobs and plans to reduce its worldwide workforce by 3,000 employees in 2019. Furthermore, Deutsche Bank’s stock valuation is 70% under its book value.
Deutsche Bank terminated its correspondent bank relationship with Danske Bank Estonia in September 2015 but continued to launder Russian money through its Moscow branch for which it was forced to pay €553.7 to US and UK regulators.
Despite warnings that Danske Bank Estonia’s bank transactions were causing its other corresponding banks, J.P. Morgan and Bank of America, to become and later withdraw their partnership with the Estonian lender, Deutsche Bank remained the only correspondent bank to stay with Danske Bank Estonia throughout the period of its known money laundering and appears to have continued the relationship despite knowing that the Estonian lender’s customers in places like Moscow and Kyiv were drawing attention from money laundering watchdogs in the United States and the European Union.