Westpac slapped with another class action

Westpac has been hit with another shareholder class action as the fallout continues from its money laundering and child exploitation scandal.

The news comes as the bank's share price cops a beating amid a coronavirus-driven rout of local stocks.

Westpac's share price fell by as much as 12.4 per cent to a new 11-year low of $15.53 by 1150 AEDT on Friday.

The nation's second largest lender said it would defend the fresh claim, launched by Johnson Winter and Slattery on behalf of investors who acquired an interest in Westpac securities or equity swap confirmations between December 16, 2013, and November 19 last year.

The claim relates to market disclosure issues connected to Westpac's monitoring of financial crime, and mirrors similar lawsuits filed by Phi Finney McDonald in December, and by US law firm Rosen in January.

The bank already faces potentially billions in fines over allegations it breached money laundering laws 23 million times and failed to properly monitor payments potentially linked to child sex offences in Southeast Asia.

The scandal has so far claimed the scalp of chief executive Brian Hartzer and chairman Lindsay Maxsted, and shareholders handed the bank a historic second strike on executive pay at its annual general meeting in December.

The bank was also forced to set aside an extra $500 million in capital as prudential regulator APRA and corporate watchdog ASIC investigate the actions of the bank's top brass.

Westpac shares took a hammering amid the fallout but that fall pales in comparison to the coronavirus-driven rout of local banking stocks since February 20.

Westpac's share price has lost 40 per cent of its value from peak to trough in three weeks.

Austrlaian Associated PressBack to Breaking News

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