April 12, 2018 / 7:03 AM / 3 months ago

Israel's Bank Hapoalim sells Swiss unit to Safra Sarasin

JERUSALEM, April 12 (Reuters) - Bank Hapoalim, Israel's largest lender, has signed a deal to sell most of its private banking business in Switzerland and Luxembourg to the J. Safra Sarasin Group for 20-23 million Swiss francs ($21-24 million).

Hapoalim said on Thursday it expects the deal to be completed in 2018 pending regulatory approvals.

The bank last year decided to end its activities in Switzerland, which have been the focus of a U.S. investigation.

U.S. authorities are investigating whether Hapoalim helped American clients evade U.S. taxes at its Swiss unit. The bank has already set aside a provision of close to $350 million. ($1 = 0.9585 Swiss francs) (Reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Tova Cohen)

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