French banks sue for billions over Lehman collapse

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France's top banks are demanding billions of dollars (euros) from the administrator of failed Wall Street investment bank Lehman Brothers, official documents issued on Friday showed.

Paris - France's top banks are demanding billions of dollars (euros) from the administrator of failed Wall Street investment bank Lehman Brothers, official documents issued on Friday showed.

BNP Paribas is claiming around USD 1.3 billion, Societe Generale USD 800 million and Dexia USD 400 million, according to AFP's calculations based on documents for the administrator published on the site Epiq Systems.

Other French banks and insurers are claiming hundreds of millions of dollars more. The deadline for claims set by the US bankruptcy court was 22 September, more than a year after the shock failure of Lehman Brothers.

Lehman's collapse on 15 September, 2008 sowed panic in boardrooms, government offices and households around the world and has come to symbolise the beginning of a steep slump that plunged the global economy into recession.

"Like other creditors, we are engaged in a procedure to recover our debts," said a spokesman for Dexia who did not however confirm the amount sought.

A spokesman for French insurer Axa, which is seeking USD 186 million according to the documents issued Friday, said: "We suffered a loss."

BNP Paribas and Societe Generale decline to comment on their own claims.

AFP/Expatica

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