The Wall Street Journal says that U.S. prosecutors are getting ready to announce settlements reached with Barclays PLC ( BCS), Citigroup Inc. (C), Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS), and J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. (JPM) over allegations involving foreign currency exchange rate rigging. All four banks are expected to plead guilty to charges of criminal antitrust related to their traders’ alleged collusion in foreign currency markets. The Department of Justice has been investigating whether traders manipulated exchange rates so that their positions would benefit even if this meant financially hurting customers.
Barclays is expected to settle with a number of agencies in the U.S. and Europe for over $1 billion. Also expected to settle is UBS AG (UBS), which was the first bank to cooperate with federal investigators in this probe. The Swiss bank, however, will reportedly be granted immunity from prosecution.
Guilty pleas by the other firms, however, aren’t going to resolve all of the investigations into forex rigging. Other banks are still under scrutiny and settlements from them may be pending.
Also, NY’s Department of Financial Services is conducting its own probe into whether large banks manipulated FX rates via computer program. The regulator has put in monitors at Deutsche Bank (DB) and Barclays to investigate the issue further. It’s also subpoenaed Goldman Sachs (GS) and a couple of other firms.
The SSEK Partners Group is a securities law firm. We help high net worth individual investors and institutional investor recoup their losses that they sustained from securities fraud.
Banks Expected to Settle FX Probes for Billions, The Wall Street Journal, May 6, 2015
UBS expects forex-rigging settlement with US as profits surge, The Guardian, May 5, 2015
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