Swedish bank Handelsbanken said on Thursday it is pulling out of the Baltic states, in a decision unrelated to the ongoing money laundering investigation into another Scandinavian bank.
Danske Bank is accused of laundering around €200bn through its department in Estonia. A swedish bank, Swedbank, is now also part of scandal, after the Swedish public broadcaster revealed around €3.8bn may have been laundered through the Baltic states.
Richard Johnson, the Handelsbanken CEO, said the decision to cease operations in the Baltic states was taken after profitability was too low.
Despite attempts to increase effectiveness, local bureaus are no longer necessary, CEO Johnson told ELTA news agency, as the clients can be supported directly from the banks’ offices in the home country.