Australia's Westpac refunds $46 million to new share buyers spooked by scandal

This post was originally published on this site

(Reuters) – Westpac Banking Corp (AX:) said on Tuesday it had refunded A$68 million ($46.14 million) to shareholders who sought to withdraw from a share purchase plan after a lawsuit accused it of millions of money laundering breaches.

Australia’s second largest lender offered last month to refund people who bought new shares under the plan before the lawsuit. Some investors had said the offer was a move to fend off criticism about its transparency.

Australia’s financial crime watchdog AUSTRAC filed a civil lawsuit in November accusing Westpac of 23 million breaches of anti-money laundering laws, including payments between convicted child exploiters.

The company faces a showdown with investors at its annual meeting this week, seeking to hold back outrage over the money laundering scandal.

In a statement on Tuesday, Westpac said it had raised a total of A$770 million in the share sale, excluding the refunded sum. About 7% of the total eligible shareholders participated in the program, it said.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.