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CARTELS: AMO SR fined the undertaking in banking sector

Updated on:
On December 19, 2014 the Division of Cartels issued a decision imposing a fine in the total amount of EUR 185 939 on the undertaking acting in banking sector in the Slovak Republic.

The findings of the Office show that during the years of 2010, 2012 and 2013 the undertaking was restricting competition by creating the platform which enabled banks acting in the Slovak market to coordinate their activities in the area of providing financial services. Such platform consequently enabled the banks, through the exchange of sensitive information, to predict the competitors´ behaviour in the market and thus decrease the intensity of competition.

Coordination referred to banking services relating to so-called basic banking product and to cash deposit on own account and its aim was to avoid the regulatory measures implemented by the Ministry of Finance of SR. In the case of the basic banking product the banks, using the platform, agreed that this product should be unattractive to customers and it should be designed only to the target group of socially disadvantaged population. In the case of the cancellation of the fee for cash deposit to own current account for natural persons, on the basis of an agreement made at the undertaking´s premises, this benefit was not provided to legal persons and for natural persons it was restricted only for the period of 6 months. 

The undertaking´s conduct harmed the consumers. The Office assessed the conduct of the undertaking as the agreement restricting competition pursuant to the article 4 of the Act on Protection of Competition.

Decision of the Antimonopoly Office of the Slovak Republic is not valid yet.

Since it is a first-instance decision which could be appealed by the undertaking concerned, the Office does not provide any details on this decision.