June 29, 2018 / 6:56 AM / 5 months ago

Australia's CBA slashes executive pay by $44 million after regulatory inquiry

FILE PHOTO: A Commonwealth Bank logo adorns an Automatic Tellar Machine (ATM) located in Sydney, Australia, in this picture taken November 12, 2014. REUTERS/David Gray/File Photo

(Reuters) - Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA.AX) said on Friday it would slash more than A$60 million ($44.33 million) in senior executive pay as part of its response to an inquiry by the Australian banking regulator.

The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) had in May commissioned an inquiry into CBA’s governance and culture, after the lender was sued by Australia’s financial intelligence agency AUSTRAC for massive breaches of money laundering laws.

APRA had imposed an extra A$1 billion onto CBA’s minimum capital requirements following the inquiry, prompting the lender to propose several remedial measures that have been approved by the banking regulator.

The bank said it would publicly report on the progress of its remedial action plan, which would be reviewed by independent reviewer Promontory Financial Group.

Australia’s biggest lender said in January that its new CEO, Matt Comyn, would receive A$2.2 million in annual fixed pay, lower than that of predecessor Ian Narev.

The bank has also faced intense scrutiny amid an ongoing inquiry into the country’s financial sector that has revealed CBA wrongfully withdrew “advice fees” from dead people’s accounts and mistakenly double charged interest to thousands of business customers.

Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier and Himani Sarkar

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