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UBS says had 47K accounts for Americans

UBS AG now says it had about 47,000 accounts held by Americans who didn’t pay U.S. taxes on their assets, but Switzerland’s biggest bank is providing the names of only 300 American clients to the U.S. government in a showdown over secrecy.

Lines were drawn in the burgeoning cross-border dispute at a hearing Wednesday by a Senate investigative panel.

A Justice Department official signaled that UBS could still be subject to criminal prosecution if terms aren’t met under the bank’s recent agreement with the U.S. government. A key senator, meanwhile, noted improving prospects, including the backing of President Barack Obama, for U.S. legislation to fight offshore tax-haven abuses.

“The rest of the world is getting fed up with offshore tax havens that turn a blind eye to tax evasion and allow their financial institutions … to profit from tax dodging,” said Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

[Article originally posted on Yahoo Finance] Continue reading

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