Danske’s Straarup Says Lawmakers Will Block Bank Tax Plans

Denmark’s banks won’t face an extra 6 billion kroner ($1.1 billion) in taxes targeted by the opposition because most lawmakers would block such a proposal, Danske Bank A/S Chief Executive Officer Peter Straarup said.

The Social Democrat-led opposition, which will win today’s national election according to all polls conducted since the vote was called last month, has said it wants banks to foot the bill for extra spending on schools and hospitals. The bloc, which also comprises the Social Liberals, is split on economic policy over key issues such as pensions and taxes.

“I’m not overly concerned,” Straarup said at a conference hosted by UBS AG today in Stockholm. “They will have to rely on the Social Liberal Party, which has a very healthy view on taxation, and there is no way they will be able to do this. That is my assessment.”

Danske Bank covered a third of the total costs related to winding down failed lenders since 2008, including Amagerbanken A/S in February and Fjordbank Mors A/S in June. The Social Democrats, led by Helle Thorning-Schmidt, also want to introduce a tax on securities transactions.

Such a plan would “lower turnover and distort liquidity,” Straarup said.

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