Bank Menatep

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Bank Menatep was a US$29 billion holding company created by Mikhail Khodorkovsky, that had indirect controlling interest in Yukos Oil Company.


The bank's financial condition was seriously damaged during the 1998 financial crisis due to a requirement by the Russian Central Bank that all commercial banks keep an economically untenable proportion of their reserve requirements in Russian treasury bills known as GKO, which subsequently collapsed, causing a default which led to the crisis and Bank Menatep's bankruptcy. The Central Bank revoked Menatep's licence in May 1999. However, according to Ernest Backes, former #3 of Clearstream, a clearing-house which has been qualified as a "bank of banks", Menatep maintained an unpublished secret account at Clearstream until at least 2000. The bankruptcy was finalized by February 2001. In an unprecedented move, the core shareholders of the bank, the financial holding Group Menatep, of which Khodorkovsky was a principal, made a decision to pay their own money to all 15,000 Bank Menatep small depositors whose savings had been wiped out by the collapse. A new Bank Menatep Saint Petersburg was created from the Saint Petersburg division of Bank Menatep. It accumulated the assets but not the liabilities of the original bank.[citation needed] In 2004 the bank was bought by the management and renamed to Trust National Bank.

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