FRANKFURT, May 22 (Reuters) - Swiss bank J. Safra Sarasin must pay German drug store entrepreneur Erwin Mueller around 45 million euros ($50.7 million) in compensation for incorrect investment advice, a court in the German city of Ulm has ruled.
The Brazilian-owned bank had put Mueller’s money into a fund specialising in so-called cum-ex trades. The 84-year-old businessman had said the bank did not properly advise him about the risks involved.
Basel-based Sarasin said it was considering its options on the ruling, which was announced on Monday, including a potential appeal. It noted the case dated back to when it was majority owned by another business.
Cum-ex trades focus on shares about to go ex-dividend and can lead to a double repayment of capital gains taxes that in fact were only paid once. The practice takes advantage of a legal loophole and is no longer admissible.
Investors lost millions when the German finance ministry halted the practice that experts calculated had cost the treasury up to 12 billion euros.
The court ruled the bank had not informed Mueller fully of commission rules and had assured him his investment was insured against losses although this was not the case.
$1 = 0.8884 euros Reporting by Ilona Wissenbach and Alexander Hübner; Writing by Michael Shields; Editing by Mark Potter