For immediate release

August 31, 1999

PRESS RELEASE


INDEPENDENT COMMITTEE OF EMINENT PERSONS




The Independent Committee of Eminent Persons, chaired by Paul A. Volcker, held its 13th meeting in New York on August 30-31, 1999. At this meeting, the Committee heard a report from each of the audit firms. These audit firms briefed the Committee on the results of their examination of 61 Swiss banks representing 255 Swiss banks that existed in 1945. The audit firms participating in the investigation are: Arthur Andersen, Deloitte & Touche, KPMG, and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

The Committee received a presentation by economist Helen Junz on a study she had prepared at the request of the Committee on the Pre-War Wealth Position of the Jewish Population in Nazi-Occupied Countries, Germany and Austria. It also reviewed arrangements for the archiving of the documents and electronic databases of the investigation, and the progress of the Claims Resolution Tribunal based on a report by its Vice Chairman Thomas Buergenthal.

Taking account of these written and oral reports, the Committee had a preliminary discussion on the substance of, and the procedure for, drafting its final report. The report will describe the origin of the problem that the Committee set out to resolve, detail the methods and procedures of the investigation, record its findings on the identification of dormant accounts in Swiss banks originating in the 1933-1945 period, and evaluate the overall results of the investigation.

Now that the basic investigative work has been completed, and the results of this work has been made available to the Committee by the auditors, the Committee expects to be able to complete its work and publish a definitive report before the end of November.