Security & Fraud

German Central Bank Seeks Tighter Change Post-Wirecard ‘Scandal’

For the second time in four days, a high-ranking German regulator has called for major changes in response to the Wirecard scandal.

In the latest development, Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann said in an interview published by newspapers that are part of the Funke media organization that auditing should be enhanced, according to a translation to English from German by Reuters.

“Wirecard is a scandal, and we have to do more to prevent it in the future,” Reuters quoted Weidmann as saying, adding that he called for more powerful auditing and accounting processes.

“For example, the audit process and the tasks, powers and liability of auditors should be reconsidered,” he said, according to Reuters.

Wirecard filed for bankruptcy earlier this year, and regulators have suggested the company claimed around 1.9 billion euros, or $U.S. 2.2 billion, in fictitious overseas assets.

Reuters reported that on Friday, Finance Minister Olaf Scholz called for separate reforms to combat corporate malfeasance.

On Wednesday, numerous media outlets reported that former Wirecard CEO Markus Braun was arrested on allegations the company overstated revenue to obtain loans it could not repay.

Pressure on Germany's regulators also is coming from outside the country. Bloomberg reported on July 15 that European Union officials said they were going to examine how German regulators performed in their oversight of Wirecard.

 

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