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BNP Paribas indicted for abuse of Swiss franc

They are 4655 customers of BNP Paribas Personal Finance to end up in penury after having subscribed between July 2008 and December 2009 a loan Helvet Realty. Is it characteristic? Granted in Swiss francs, which is repayable in euros. But because of the outbreak of the Swiss currency to face the European currency, the capital to be repaid by borrowers has increased steadily for six years at the rate of fluctuations in the foreign exchange market.

So Eric and Marie-Line Germain, a couple of Saint-Laurent-d’Arce (Gironde), who borrowed 145,000 euros in July 2008 to make a property investment, must now 212,775 euros (67,775 euros more) while the household reimburses 907 euros a month for almost seven years. A nightmare for all customers Helvet Realty, some of which have gone to court.

Reportedly, BNP Personal Finance, a 100% subsidiary of BNP Paribas, was indicted April 16 for “misleading commercial practice”. Times are tough for BNP Paribas that continues to pay for the mistakes of governance leaders. This case comes after his conviction in an $ 8.8 billion record fine (€ 7.9 billion) last year in the United States and returning correctional, more recently, the first French bank about a savings product sold in 2001, which did not keep the performance promises to customers.

“Transparency”. The Helvet Realty folder with very distressing contours for borrowers is educated since spring 2013 by Claire Thépaut judge, the financial hub of the High Court of Paris, following the filing of complaints and civil party 549 customers who endorse these loans between March 2008 and December 2009. However, “from 2011, some borrowers have found their toxic nature,” said their lawyer Charles Constantine Vallet. To the point that the bank decided for itself to stop marketing Helvet Realty early 2010. The indictment came after hearings in March and April, Thierry Laborde, former CEO of BNP Paribas PF, now deputy director-general of the BNP group. Contacted by Liberation, the bank said it had “taken note of [his] indictment.” “We will work seamlessly with the law to demonstrate our good faith”, said Monday its communications service.

For borrowers, who feel good only for five years (the government never designed to look at their situation), this court decision is considered a “new stage.” “Finally some good news, at last, we are listened to by someone. These loans are a disgrace, “responded Eric Germain, responsible for a rental agency of construction equipment. “When I heard it, I cried, said Leonard Pizzato, another client Helvet Realty. My wife and I had enough of this sword of Damocles hanging over our heads. “He is a home agent in a high school in Alsace. His wife is a teacher. They belong to the lower middle class. Like other borrowers caught in the midst of these “toxic loans”, they acquired a dedicated housing for rent under the tax exemption devices Robien or Scellier (1). To finance it, they have signed a loan Helvet Realty in the amount of EUR 220 000. So they pay 1,424 euros per month since February 2010, they are … 306 544 euros according to the statement sent by the bank in March. “The more time passes, the more we will reimburse, and it owes money. It will stop increasing when? “Asks Leonard Pizzato.

“Hope”. Over the past six years, things went from bad to worse since the European currency has continued to depreciate against the Swiss franc. In January, when the Swiss National Bank decided to abandon its conversion floor rate to 1.20 Swiss francs per euro, the principal payments for customers Helvet Realty was up 15% in a few days. “When the first loans were granted in 2008, the euro was worth 1.61 Swiss francs. Today, it’s a Euro 1.05 Swiss franc “Mr. Constantine advanced Vallet. “The indictment of the bank offers borrowers a hope, said the lawyer Monday in Liberation. An indictment is without prejudice of guilt, but it shows that the judge gathered enough evidence for a misleading commercial practice of BNP Paribas Personal Finance. “The bank now claims to be” in listening to its customers for a solution. ” Solutions “inequitable” react certain customers.

(1) These tax provisions are entitled to a tax reduction for people who buy a new home to rent.