Bank of France Says BNP Can Withstand U.S. Fine, Clearing Ban

BNP Paribas SA can withstand the almost $9 billion fine and yearlong ban on clearing some dollar trades imposed by U.S. authorities, the Bank of France said.

The central bank’s regulatory arm “has examined the situation of BNP Paribas and concluded that the BNP Paribas Group has a solid solvency and liquidity position, which will allow it to absorb the anticipated consequences of this decision,” the Bank of France said in a statement today.

French officials warned state and federal authorities that imposing disproportionate fines on France’s largest bank could harm the national economy and Europe’s banking system. BNP Paribas was under investigation for violating U.S. sanctions against blacklisted nations.

The Bank of France said the way the penalty has been structured will allow BNP to continue operations.

The regulator considers that “the present organization and controls enacted are adapted to the characteristics of its business, in particular its international activity,” the Bank of France said in the e-mailed statement. “Thus with all licenses and authorizations maintained, the BNP Paribas Group is in a position to continue its business in full compliance with all applicable laws.”

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