Allianz SE’s Ineffective Internal Controls Allowed its Subsidiary to Engage in Substantial Fraudulent Activity
A shareholder filed a class action on behalf of persons or entities who purchased or otherwise acquired Allianz SE (OTC: ALIZY) securities between March 9, 2018 and May 17, 2022, for violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Allianz, together with its subsidiaries, provides property-casualty insurance, life/health insurance, and asset management products and services worldwide. Allianz Global Investors U.S. LLC (“AGI US”) is a subsidiary of Allianz.
According to the complaint, during the class period, defendants touted the Company’s effective internal risk and control system for verifying and monitoring its operating activities and business processes, particularly in financial reporting and compliance with regulatory requirements. In reality (i) Allianz did not have effective internal controls, and (ii) its subsidiary was involved in substantial fraudulent activity, putting Allianz at an increased risk of regulatory scrutiny and substantial financial losses and costs.
On May 17, 2022, Allianz announced that it had booked a provision of 3.7 billion euros in its financial statements of 2021 with regard to “the pending court and governmental proceedings in the U.S. in relation to the Structured Alpha Funds.” The same day, the SEC issued a press release announcing it had charged Allianz Global Investors and three former senior portfolio managers with “a massive fraudulent scheme that concealed the immense downside of a complex options trading strategy they called ‘Structured Alpha.'” As a result, AGI US agreed to pay billions of dollars as part of a global resolution, including more than $1 billion to settle SEC charges and together with its parent, Allianz SE, over $5 billion in restitution to victims. The DOJ also brought claims against these defendants. As a result, AGI US pled guilty to securities fraud in connection with this fraudulent scheme, and agreed to pay more than $3 billion in restitution to the innocent victims of this fraud, pay a criminal fine of approximately $2.3 billion, and forfeit approximately $463 million to the Government.
What Now: Similarly situated shareholders may be eligible to participate in the class action against Allianz. Shareholders who want to act as lead plaintiff for the class must file their papers by April 3, 2023. A lead plaintiff is a representative party acting on behalf of other class members in directing the litigation. You do not have to participate in the case to be eligible for a recovery.
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