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Russia’s Central Bank strips 3 more banks of licenses in ongoing sector restructuring

June 02, 2014, 13:08 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Moscow-based BFT and Sofrino banks lost their licenses for their highly risky policies of placing funds in low-quality assets, while the Irkutsk-based Radian bank repeatedly violated the federal anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing law
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© ITAR-TASS/Sergei Bobylev

MOSCOW, June 2. /ITAR-TASS/. The Russian Central Bank (CBR) has stripped two Moscow and one Siberian bank of their banking licenses in a continued effort to restructure the country’s financial system and ensure its stable development.

The regulator said in a statement on Monday it had revoked banking licenses from the Moscow-based BFT and Sofrino banks for their highly risky policies of placing funds in low-quality assets.

The third lender, the Irkutsk-based Radian bank, was stripped of its license as it repeatedly violated the federal anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing law, the statement said.

As of May 1, 2014, BFT Bank held the 350th place in the Russian banking system while Sofrino ranked 315th and Radian 735th.

 

Improving Russian banking system

Overall, the Russian monetary and financial regulator has revoked licenses from 37 banks since the start of the year to cut their number to less than 900 by May.

Russian President Vladimir Putin earlier said in response to a journalists’ question that license revocations were intended to improve the country’s financial system and free it from financial institutions that could not fulfill their obligations to depositors and work efficiently and posed a risk to the entire banking system.

CBR Head Elvira Nabiullina said that the effort to clean the banking sector of inefficient operators is not a temporary campaign and will continue, and that the country’s top bank does not have a blacklist of banking institutions.

“Over the past year, about 50 banks have quit the market. These were either banks of unsatisfactory financial standing or banks strongly involved in criminal money market servicing,” Nabiullina said.

The process when inefficient operators quit the market makes the banking system healthy and raises people’s confidence in the country’s financial system, she added.

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