Marsh pays out $850m to settle kickback scandal

/ 08.01.2005 / 14:11

Marsh pays out $850m to settle kickback scandal


Marsh & McLennan, the world's biggest insurance broker, yesterday agreed to pay $850m (£450m) to settle allegations that it rigged the market and took kickbacks from insurance firms for directing business their way.

The settlement is the latest victory for the New York attorney general Eliot Spitzer who in the past few years has exposed widespread corruption on Wall Street and wrung billions of dollars from the firms involved.

The cash will be used to reimburse the broker's clients who were forced to pay inflated prices because of the alleged fraud. Marsh issued an apology for "unlawful" and "shameful" behaviour.

Mr Spitzer said "new ethical ground rules" were being established for the industry. "It is one of the largest restitution funds in history from a single company," he said.

"To its credit, Marsh is not disputing the problems identified in our original complaint," he said. "Instead, the company has embraced restitution and reform as a way of making a clean break from the practices that misled and harmed its clients in the past."

In the past three months, six executives from three insurance firms - AIG, Ace and Zurich Financial Services - have pleaded guilty to criminal charges relating to the original suit filed against Marsh in October.

The suit alleged that Marsh had steered its clients towards insurance firms with which it had lucrative pay-off agreements, instead of seeking the best policy and price for clients. It also claimed Marsh had solicited fake bids from insurers to drive up prices.

The investigation into other firms that allegedly conspired with Marsh is still continuing.

As part of the agreement, Marsh has adopted a series of reforms, including limiting brokerage compensation to a single fee or commission and banning so-called "contingent commissions" - which is the euphemism for kickbacks. It has also introduced a rule requiring all forms of compensation be disclosed to clients.

The broker asked clients and others for the opportunity to regain their trust. "The recent admissions by former employees of Marsh and other companies have made clear that certain Marsh employees unlawfully deceived their customers," it said in the apology.

Marsh does not admit guilt in the settlement, a move to protect it from several pending lawsuits.


Marsh & McLennan, самый крупный страховой брокер, вчера согласился осуществить выплату в $ 850 млн с целью урегулирования обвинений в искусственном повышении цен и получении откатов от страховых компаний за направление им бизнеса.

Сумма будет потрачена на возмещение убытков клиентам, которые были вынуждены платить высокие цены за осуществляемое брокером мошенничество.

В прошлые три месяца шесть топ-менеджеров из трех страховых компаний – AIG, Ace и Financial Services – были признаны виновными по искам, аналогичным настоящим.

Суд постановил, что Marsh целенаправленно направлял клиентов к заинтересованным страховым компаниям, с которыми имел соглашения на увеличенную комиссию, вместо того, чтобы предоставлять клиентам наилучшие страховые условия. Marsh также был обвинен в запрашивании высоких тарифных ставок от страховщиков с целью увеличения прибыльности своих бизнес-операций.

Брокер обратился к клиентам и другим партнерам за возможностью восстановления доверия. «Недавние признания, сделанные бывшими работниками Marsh и других компаний, прояснили, что некоторые работники Marsh незаконным способом обманывали своих клиентов и партнеров», признался брокер.

Все Новости

Marsh pays out $850m to settle kickback scandal