The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has confirmed that charges have been laid against ANZ, Citigroup and Deutshe Bank.
Following an investigation into alleged cartel conduct by the banks relating to an ANZ institutional share placement in August 2015, the watchdog has hit the banks and senior executives with criminal charges.
In addition to Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, and ANZ as companies, criminal charges have also been laid against several senior personnel: John McLean, Itay Tuchman and Stephen Roberts of Citigroup; Michael Ormaechea and Michael Richardson formerly of Deutsche Bank; and Rick Moscati of ANZ.
The charges involve alleged cartel arrangements relating to trading in ANZ shares held by Deutsche Bank and Citigroup.
ANZ and each of the individuals are alleged to have been knowingly concerned in some or all of the alleged conduct.
ACCC Chairman Rod Sims says the conduct is very "serious".
"These serious charges are the result of an ACCC investigation that has been running for more than two years," says Sims.
"Charges have now been laid by the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions and the matter will be determined by the Court."
The matter is listed before the Downing Centre Local Court in Sydney on 3 July 2018.
Shares in ANZ are down 0.34 per cent to $26.66 per share at 4.10pm AEST.
Business News Australia
Help us deliver quality journalism to you.
As a free and independent news site providing daily updates
during a period of unprecedented challenges for businesses everywhere
we call on your support