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Following US class actions against German and Austrian banks under the title “Holocaust Era Assets”, Bank Austria agreed a settlement with victims of National Socialism and their descendants.

The conditions for the settlement also included the reappraisal of the history of the predecessor institutions of Bank Austria by an international and independent Historians’ Commission and the establishment of a bank archive that is accessible for scientific research.

Chronology

October 1998
German and Austrian banks are sued by victims of National Socialism in the US.
March 1999
Austrian banks endeavour to reach a settlement and agree the Settlement Agreement with Creditanstalt AG and Bank Austria AG in re Austrian and German Bank Holocaust Litigation.
May 1999
Approval of the settlement with victims of National Socialism at the ordinary general meeting of the bank.
June 1999
Beginning of the world-wide search for victims who were harmed by the predecessor institutions of Bank Austria during the Nazi regime, with the assistance of the national fund of the Austrian Republic.
July 1999
Judge Shirley Wohl appoints the independent members of an international Historians’ Commission, the members of the Restitution Committee and the Claims Committee.
January 2000
The settlement is approved by the New York court with the Memorandum Opinion and Order in re Austrian and German Bank Litigation.
May 2000
The general meeting of the bank resolves to award an additional US$5 million in favour of Austrian holocaust victims.
June 2000
The independent Historians’ Commission of Bank Austria begins its work on researching the history of Creditanstalt, Länderbank and Zentralsparkasse Wien during the Nazi regime.
August 2001
The settlement comes into force.
November 2006
Press conference and presentation of the published final report of the independent Historians’ Commission of Bank Austria Creditanstalt.
21 May 2008
Opening of the Historic Archive of Bank Austria

Historians’ Commission

The independent Historians’ Commission of Bank Austria had the task of investigating the economic and strategic significance of the predecessor institutions of Bank Austria during the Nazi regime, the conduct of the banks in connection with seizures of assets and all the activities of Creditanstalt-Bankverein, Länderbank Wien and Zentralsparkasse der Gemeinde Wien during the Nazi era.

The work was completed with publication of the commission’s final report and was published in the form of a publication comprising 2,000 pages.

Members of the Historians’ Commission and final report

Gerald D. Feldman, Oliver Rathkolb, Theodor Venus, Ulrike Zimmerl (Hg.)

“Österreichische Banken und Sparkassen im Nationalsozialismus und in der Zwischenkriegszeit” (Austrian Banks and Savings Institutions during the National-Socialist and inter-war Period).

Creditanstalt-Bankverein; Creditanstalt-Regionalbanken, Länderbank and Zentralsparkasse, 2 volumes,

C.H. Beck Verlag, Munich 2006 , ISBN 13 978-3-406-55158-5

Link: https://www.chbeck.de/feldman-d-rathkolb-venus-zimmerl-oesterreichische-banken-sparkassen-nationalsozialismus-nachkriegszeit/product/20471

Histroic Archive

The Historic Archive of Bank Austria is the first archive of an Austrian commercial bank to be accessible for scientific research.

Bank Austria is hereby realising a pioneering stimulus to Austrian economic history. The institution is making an essential contribution to promoting research and the long-term sharing of knowledge. In addition, Bank Austria is seen as a model and is strengthening awareness of the importance of banking and corporate archives in Austria.

Historisches Archiv der Bank Austria
Use of the Historic Archive

Use is by appointment
Historical Section

 Bank Austria - Member of UniCredit

 Rothschildplatz 4

 A-1020 Vienna, Austria

 Head of Historical Section:

 Dr Ulrike Zimmerl

 Tel: +43 (0)5 05 05-41053

ulrike.zimmerl@unicreditgroup.at

 

Terms and conditions of use       

  • Inspection of archive records up until 1945
  • Evidence of a legitimate interest
  • Notification of the subject of research
  • Compliance with user regulations
  • Signature of a confidentiality agreements (data privacy, client data, banking secrecy)