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Commonwealth Bank chief Ian Narev to leave bank by end of financial year

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Commonwealth Bank chief executive Ian Narev will leave the bank by the end of this financial year, the bank’s chairman Catherine Livingstone says.

As the country’s biggest lender is engulfed by allegations it breached anti-money laundering rules, Ms Livingstone said Mr Narev would retire by June 2018, subject to when it was able to find a replacement.

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Narev: CBA made ‘mistakes’

Commonwealth Bank chief executive Ian Narev says the bank has ‘made mistakes’ relating to alleged breaches of anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing laws.

The announcement comes amid recent speculation about Mr Narev’s future, after the bank was slammed over the money laundering compliance allegations, and its handling of the scandal.

“Succession planning is an ongoing process at all levels of the bank,” Ms Livingstone said.

“In discussions with Ian we have also agreed it is important for the business that we deal with the speculation and questions about his tenure. Today’s statement provides that clarity and will ensure he can continue to focus, as CEO, on successfully managing the business.”

Ms Livingstone will hold a press conference later this morning to discuss the bank’s succession planning.

CBA’s annual report, published Monday, showed Mr Narev’s remuneration in the last financial year was $5.5 million, down from $12.3 million last year, after the board cut bonuses in response to the scandal.

The report showed Mr Narev missed out on a bonus that could have been worth several million dollars, while five other senior executives also had their bonuses cut to zero.

Walking away: CBA CEO Ian Narev. Walking away: CBA CEO Ian Narev. Photo: Peter Braig

“Executive performance against financial and non-financial measures as strong for FY-17, however, remuneration outcomes demonstrate overriding consideration of the significant damage caused to the group’s trust and reputation as a result of risk matters, most notably the recent civil penalty proceedings initiated by Austrac,” the report said.

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