Alexander Vik said margin calls by Deutsche Bank AG as markets tumbled in October 2008 caused him so much stress that he was treated in a hospital, according to evidence given by the Norwegian investor to a London court.
Vik was in a state of “confusion and shock” as Deutsche Bank demanded hundreds of millions of dollars to cover losses by a trader, Klaus Said, on behalf of Vik’s Sebastian Holdings Inc., according to a witness statement released today. Vik, who thought Said had a $35 million trading limit, said his wife took him to a Greenwich, Connecticut, hospital where he was given anxiety medication.
Sebastian Holdings is suing Deutsche Bank for as much as $8 billion in losses and missed profits. Sebastian says Germany’s biggest bank allowed unauthorized trading in its accounts, then improperly liquidated positions.
Vik, 58, appeared as a witness for the first time today in the 12-week trial, and answered questions about his wealth and expertise in financial markets.
“I’m proud of being knowledgeable and experienced in business,” he said. On individual financial products, “I don’t have any expertise.”
The Frankfurt-based bank denies doing anything wrong and says Vik’s fund still owes it money from margin calls. Sebastian Howell, a Deutsche Bank spokesman, declined to comment on the testimony.
The case is Deutsche Bank AG v. Sebastian Holdings Inc., High Court of Justice, Queen’s Bench Division, Commercial Court, 09-83.