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BANKING

Standard Chartered’s $1 billion fine draws line under Iran breaches

Closure of second investigation brings embarrassing episode to an end.

Bill-Winters-StanChart-shocks-R-780

Standard Chartered chief executive Bill Winters



Standard Chartered announced on Tuesday that it will pay $1.1 billion to resolve investigations by US and UK regulators into its alleged breaches of sanctions against Iran.

The bank will pay $947 million to an assortment of five US agencies, led by the US Department of Justice; and £102 million to the UK Financial Conduct Authority.

The agreement resolves an issue that has been hanging over the bank since Peter Sands’ time.

It already paid a $667 million fine in 2012 over its handling of transactions involving Iran between 2001 and 2007. But then, while under a two-year deferred prosecution agreement, it revealed it had conducted other transactions for Iranian clients. A four-year extension to the deferred prosecution agreement and a new investigation followed.

It’s this latter investigation that has now been settled, and it seems to have cost more than the bank had expected: it had provisioned $900 million for the fines. On top of that, the deferred prosecution agreement has been extended (again), to 2021.