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'Groundless' rumours spark Latvian bank run

Monday 12 December 2011 - by Nicola.York@gfnews.com


Rumours of trouble at Swedish lender Swedbank AB, which led to a run on Latvian branches over the weekend, were sparked by social media, according to reports.

Queues of people formed at Swedbank cash points in Latvia on Sunday after panicked reports spread on Twitter that Swedish banks were in trouble, leaving a third of its cash machines empty by Sunday evening.

But Swedbank communications director Thomas Backteman said the rumours were "completely groundless" and said the bank is working with regulators to calm customers.

Latvia's Financial and Capital Markets Commission and the police are looking into the origin of the rumours, which included false speculation that Swedbank would be leaving the country and that therefore customers' money would not be able to access their money.



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