Monday 29 June 2020 2:06 pm

Deutsche Boerse looks at revising Dax membership rules after Wirecard scandal

The Wirecard scandal has prompted the German stock exchange operator to look at revisions to membership rules for Germany’s premier stock market index.

Last week, the embattled German firm filed for insolvency after disclosing a €1.9bn blackhole in its accounts.

It is the first sitting member of Germany’s blue-chip share index to go out of business, after premiering just two years ago with a €24bn valuation.

Deutsche Boerse said it was looking at changing some rules for Germany’s Dax index since “trust in the capital markets has obviously suffered in recent days”.

The payment processor firm first said “fraud of considerable proportions” could not be ruled out after auditor EY found the €1.9bn was missing.

Wirecard’s share price dropped more than 80 per cent in just five sessions, from €104.50 per share to just €17.16, after disclosing it was likely the money did not exist.

This morning the firm started the day at €1.70 per share, climbing 212.26 per cent to €4.00 by 9.15am. The firm, which is now trading at €3.65, had hit highs of €191 last summer.

Deutsche Boerse’s former head of compliance joined Wirecard just this month. James Freis was appointed chief compliance officer at the firm in May before becoming interim chief executive after Markus Braun stepped down amid the scandal.

Braun was last week arrested on suspicion of falsifying accounts at Wirecard and manipulating markets.

A Financial Times report states that Freis has told supervisory board members that basic checks should have been enough to spot the issues at Wirecard. He also reportedly told the board he did not understand how the fraud could have gone undetected for such a long time, according to Suddeutsche Zeitung.