Deutsche Bank changes legal status of U.S. unit

FRANKFURT, March 21 (Reuters) - Germany’s Deutsche Bank AG changed the legal status of its main U.S. subsidiary, Taunus Corp, as a way to avoid injecting billions of dollars of capital into the unit by 2015.

Effective Feb. 1, Deutsche Bank gave up bank holding company status for Taunus Corp and made Deutsche Bank Trust Co the main U.S. holding company, the lender’s annual report showed.

In the event of a capital shortfall at Deutsche Bank Trust Co, regulators can now demand a recapitalisation from the German parent based in Frankfurt, rather than relying on the U.S. holding company as an intermediary.

This legal simplification helps Deutsche Bank conform with the Dodd-Frank financial reform law.

“We have always had and will continue to have appropriate capital levels in all of our U.S.-regulated entities. This action, which does not diminish any of our regulatory oversight, allows us to streamline our organisational structure, strengthening an already strong institution,” a spokesman for the bank said on Wednesday.

Taunus was a holding company for the German lender’s main U.S. operating subsidiaries: broker-dealer Deutsche Bank Securities Inc, banking arm Deutsche Bank Trust Corp, and limited liability companies and special purpose vehicles.

Reuters reported Deutsche’s intention to make the legal changes to its U.S. unit in April 2011. (Reporting By Edward Taylor; Editing by Gary Hill)