The Vatican Bank is busy repenting
The Catholic Church scrambles to clean up its financial act amid a widening scandal.
According to Reuters, two top managers of the Vatican Bank, officially known as the Institute for Works of Religion (IOR), recently resigned in the wake of the arrest of a high-ranking cleric, Monsignor Nunzio Scarano, and two other people on charges of smuggling 20 million euros ($26.4 million) into Italy on a private jet.
Director Paolo Cipriani and his deputy Massimo Tulli decided to step down because "it was in the best interest of the institute and the Holy See," according to a statement the Vatican provided to the media.
Ernst von Freyberg, the bank's president who was appointed last February, will take over as interim director. He has vowed to make IOR, which has about 7.1 billion euros ($9.23 billion) in assets, more transparent, Bloomberg News says.
The IOR has been tainted by scandals for decades, including links to the Mafia. Under Pope Francis, the bank is trying to clean up its act, though critics say more needs to be done. The Holy Father last week named an independent commission to oversea its operations. Moneyval, a European banking regulator, had blasted the Holy See last year for "non-compliance with global financial transparency norms and gave it negative grades in seven out of 16 so-called 'core' and 'key' recommendations," according to The Telegraph.
Scarano's arrest is a huge embarrassment to the Vatican. According to transcripts of wiretapped phone conversations, the priest "controlled vast amounts of money and felt he could act with impunity because of his connections to the Vatican bank," Reuters said. The wire service quoted his attorney Silverio Sica saying wealthy friends donated money to the priest for him to build a home for the terminally ill.
The Vatican will be getting scrutiny as it tries to rebound from this scandal. And, as Reuters noted, it has agreed to report on its progress to Moneyval. Dan Brown, are you taking notes?
Follow Jonathan Berr on Twitter @jdberr.
Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.
[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market ended the Thursday session on a mixed note ahead of Friday's nonfarm payrolls report for February (Briefing.com consensus 163K). The Dow Jones Industrial Average (+0.4%) and S&P 500 (+0.2%) posted modest gains while the Nasdaq Composite (-0.1%) lagged throughout the session.
Equities began the trading day on an upbeat note following comments from the Bank of England and the European Central Bank, both of which reaffirmed their commitment to ... More
More Market News
Consumers are very status conscious in Asia, Africa and other emerging-market areas. This is especially true in China.
MUST-SEE ON MSN
- Video: Easy DIY smoked meats at home
A charcuterie master shares his process for cold-smoking meat at home.
- Jetpacks about to go mainstream
- Weird things covered by home insurance
- Bing: 70 percent of adults report 'digital eye strain'