Insurers pay ANZ in ING frozen funds settlement

by Maryvonne Gray 26 Feb 2014

Insurers pay ANZ in ING frozen funds settlement

ANZ are refusing to give further details about a settlement made with insurers over the ING frozen funds.

In its latest General Disclosure Statement ANZ Bank New Zealand Limited says;  "In December 2013, the Bank reached a conditional agreement with insurers to settle its claim in relation to the Bank’s former involvement in the ING Diversified Yield Fund and the ING Regular Income Fund for payment of AUD85 million, subject to taxation."

When contacted by Insurance Business, the ANZ spokesman said he could not expand any further other than to say: “The settlement with insurers around this issue was a few years ago. We are not able to go into further detail.”

He could not be drawn on the timing of the statement, nor could he say if the lack of further information was a condition of the agreement.

It leaves questions surrounding whether there are other court cases yet to be resolved, which insurers the conditional agreement has been reached with and what exactly the agreement conditions are.

The two funds in question were frozen in March 2008 affecting around 15,000 investors.

In 2010 ANZ and ING settled with the Commerce Commission agreeing to pay $45 million in what was its largest monetary settlement to date.

The consumer watchdog had investigated alleged breaches of the Fair Trading Act relating to the marketing and promotion of the funds by ANZ and ING.

ANZ subsequently struck a deal with ING Group to buy ING’s 51% shareholdings in the ANZ-ING wealth management and life insurance joint ventures in Australia and New Zealand for A$1.76 billion.

The deal gave ANZ licence to use the ING brand until November 2010. The name was changed to OnePath, although ANZ's funds management and KiwiSaver business is now known as ANZ Investments and just the life insurance operation is branded OnePath.