Germany to strengthen regulator after Wirecard debacle

BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s finance minister has unveiled plans to strengthen the country’s financial supervisory authority following the accounting scandal at payment systems provider Wirecard. He promised Tuesday that the agency will gain “bite.” The finance ministry had announced on Friday that regulator BaFin’s president, Felix Hufeld, was stepping down to make possible a “new beginning” at the top. BaFin’s executive director for securities supervision, Elisabeth Roegele, is also leaving. One-time tech star Wirecard filed for protection from creditors through insolvency proceedings in June after admitting that 1.9 billion euros ($2.3 billion) that was supposedly held in trust accounts in the Philippines probably did not exist. German authorities have been criticized for failing to step in sooner.