DENMARK - The Danish financial regulator has reported pensions provider PKA to the police for repeatedly failing to disclose holding large stakes in companies that were above legal limits.
PKA, which may be fined, has admitted the failures and blamed them on administrative errors rather than any attempt to profit financially from the misdeeds.
In a statement, the Financial Services Authority (Finanstilsynet) said it had "decided to report PKA A/S to the police for having - in nine cases - breached paragraph 29 of securities trading law as well as paragraphs 4 and 16 on disclosing major shareholders in connection with several acquisitions and disposals of stakes in a range of quoted businesses in the period June 2007 to June 2009".
These paragraphs concerned, the regulator said, means there is an obligation on shareholders and those representing them, e.g. with power of attorney, to inform both the company and the FSA when a holding exceeded certain limits.
"With the decision to report PKA A/S to the police, the FSA has attached importance to the fact that there have been repeated breaches, as well as the fact that some of the breaches have taken place after the FSA informed PKA A/S of the rules," the FSA said.
In five of the nine cases, the delay in reporting to companies had led to a situation where the market did not have timely information about PKA's stakeholdings, it added.
"The FSA's reprimand is correct, and PKA acknowledges the error," the pensions provider said in a statement. "It must be underlined that this concerns a purely administrative error and not an attempt to profit. No market participants have lost or won as a result of the failure to report.
"PKA regrets the mistakes and has of course undertaken a significant tightening up of its business processes in this area, so that similar mistakes will not happen again."
Now that the matter has been handed over to the police, it will be up to the law enforcement officers to decide whether or the case should be brought to court, an FSA spokesman said. If and when that happens, the court will decide whether to fine PKA and how much any fine should be, he said.
PKA runs pensions investment for eight pension funds, mostly in the healthcare sector. It has assets under management of around DKK111bn (€14.78bn).
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