Felix Hufeld is for clear words to be known. Shortly after his inauguration as head of the financial authority, Bafin, in March 2015, the Jurist was regarded as a “Bank shock”.
Now Germany’s top Financial struggles overseer to his reputation and the Reputation of a public authority, the politicians blame the failure of the accounting scandal with the payment service provider Wirecard.
Even the native of Mainz, sets high standards. Managers, he reads quite time on the open stage of the Levites. “Victim mentality” certificated Hufeld bankers at a conference in September 2019, because of the leading representatives of the industry, citing the low Interest rates as a justification for lean gains, rather than business models that radically transform. In March 2020, the President of the German Federal financial Supervisory authority (Bafin), not all had heard “the shot confirmed”.
And the Bafin in the case of Wirecard? Would not need to be on the sooner rather carefully, that in which in rapid speed to the Dax group ascended Fintech may not be all things approached? Since 2015, the British newspaper Financial Times (FT) reported about oddities and irregularities in Wirecard. In this spring, then the big Bang: billion hole in the balance sheet for insolvency, the exchange of the Board, investigations against the Ex-chief.
Hufeld called the operations a “disgrace” and expressed themselves critically on the role of supervision: “We have not been effective enough to prevent something like this happens.” At the same time, but the 59 makes it clear-Year-old: His authority was, and is, formally, only for the Wirecard Bank AG is responsible for the overall group, Wirecard had been classified in agreement of various regulatory authorities as a technology company.
“We would have had to bring the classification as a financial holding fast to the end,” admits Hufeld recently in an interview with the weekly newspaper “die Zeit”. “Even if this amounted to almost certainly nothing to counter-Balance and illusions with high criminal energy would have to align.”
Hufeld, who presented in the past as an overseer with a bite (“supervision must also be able to bite – only the good analysis, it does not.”) also in the question of responsibility for the current Disaster combative. “With all willingness, in future cases, such as Wirecard, to exclude, and my authority even more effective to set up, I don’t see where Bafin is in violation of EU law should have,” says the Bafin-in-chief in the beginning of July, published in “time”Interview.
Nevertheless, It is not the first Time that the Bafin as a “toothless Tiger”, appears in the right Moment of the bite is missing. In the 2008 financial crisis, critics accused the authority to have gambling transactions of banks are not detected in a timely manner – for example, in the case of the later, in an Emergency nationalised real estate Bank HRE. And what is the Bafin, towards fact, as the years of share at the expense of the tax Fund and have been shuffled – the so-called Cum-Ex-transactions?
The truth, however, The Wirecard scandal illustrates how the supervision in Germany is fragmented. The control of corporate balance sheets is a task of the Bafin – but only in the second stage. The primary responsibility of the privately organised German financial reporting enforcement panel (DPR) is and was, allegedly, only an employee for an inspection order of the Bafin in terms of Wirecard. In addition, analysts and investors from the fabulous rise of the payment service provider Wirecard, with its rather nondescript Headquarters in the Munich suburb of Aschheim dazzle.
Hufeld began his professional career in 1992 as a management consultant at Boston Consulting. He rose at Dresdner Bank as head of global group development (1999 to 2001), then led for almost ten years, the German business of the international insurance broker Marsh.
When he stopped the 2010 Marsh, focused Hufeld first of all, some of the shareholdings and Supervisory Board seats. From January 2013, Hufeld was in the case of the Bafin in the duty and took over the authority, first of all, the insurance supervision. The Bonn-based authority has also in Frankfurt, a location, the married father of two children suits: Hufeld lives not far away in Bad Homburg in the Taunus.
Responded to the latest calls for his resignation Hufeld remains in the “time”Interview loyalty: “Would classify our behavior in a fair observation of the actual misconduct, then I would be the First to draw the appropriate conclusion. I can’t detect in the case of Wirecard but.”