The Financial Times reports that Vietnamese prime minister, Nguyen Tan Dun, has told the country's central bank officials and police authorities to get their fingers out. The investigations into alleged illegal foreign exchange trading by ABN Amro has dragged on, and two local ABN employees have been banged up in jail for 16 months, pending the outcome of the probe.
The Dutch bank has denied any wrongdoing, which resulted in the state-owned Industrial and Commercial Bank of Vietnam sustaining a $5.4m loss. Nguyen Tan Dun is alarmed that the lengthy investigation is doing nothing for the country's image, and might deter foreign banks from doing business. No kiddin'!
Bloomberg reports that Commerzbank has reported a 17% decline in third-quarter profits. Net income came in at $277m, as the firm made increased provisions for bad debts following its takeover of mortgage lender Eurohypo in March.
And Deutsche Bank CEO Josef Ackermann is stuck in that court room in Dusseldorf. He is in the midst of a retrial on 'breach of trust' charges, following the payment of departing bonuses worth $73m to Mannesmann executives at the time of the Vodafone takeover in 2000 (Ackermann was on the Mannesmann supervisory board at the time). In a statement to the court Thursday, Ackermann said that 'I really find it hard to see why payments such as these became the subject of a court trial............It was right to grant bonuses to those who had created extraordinary value (for shareholders)'.
Morgan Stanley is to raise around $8bn for what Bloomberg describes as the 'biggest-ever high-yield real estate fund' ever. It is thought that the fund will invest in property mainly outside the US.
Finally, The New York Post reports that New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer has finally come off the fence and stated how much dosh he wants former New York Stock Exchange chief Dick Grasso to return from his exit package - a cool $112.2m of the $187.5m.