EU regulators fine five banks 1.07 billion euros for forex rigging

Image result for The logo of Barclays is seen on the top of one of its branch in Madrid, Spain in this March 22, 2016 file photo. REUTERS/Sergio Perez/Files
The logo of Barclays is seen on the top of one of its branch in Madrid, Spain in this March 22, 2016 file photo. REUTERS/Sergio Perez/Files

Barclays, Citigroup and JP Morgan among banks fined $1.2 billion for forex rigging//Crimson Tazvinzwa

BRUSSELS, (Reuters) – EU antitrust regulators on Thursday fined Barclays, Citigroup, JPMorgan , MUFG and Royal Bank of Scotland a total of 1.07 billion euros ($1.2 billion) for rigging the spot foreign exchange market for 11 currencies

  • Barclays, Citigroup, J.P. Morgan, MUFG and Royal Bank of Scotland have been fined a total of 1.07 billion euros ($1.2 billion) by EU antitrust regulators for rigging the spot foreign exchange market for 11 currencies.
  • Swiss bank UBS was exempted from a 285 million euro fine since it alerted the existence of two cartels to the European Commission.
  • A similar case with the U.S. regulators is ongoing where Barclays, BNP Paribas, Citigroup, J.P. Morgan, Royal Bank of Scotland and UBS have entered related guilty pleas, and been collectively fined more than $2.8 billion.

“Companies and people depend on banks to exchange money to carry out transactions in foreign countries. Foreign exchange spot trading activities are one of the largest markets in the world, worth billions of euros every day,” EU Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a press release Thursday.

“Today we have fined Barclays, The Royal Bank of Scotland, Citigroup, J.P. Morgan and MUFG Bank and these cartel decisions send a clear message that the Commission will not tolerate collusive behavior in any sector of the financial markets. The behavior of these banks undermined the integrity of the sector at the expense of the European economy and consumers,” Vestager added.

The EU investigation that has been ongoing for the past six years revealed that some individual traders from various banks in charge of forex trading — a form of trading executed on an intra-day basis — exchanged sensitive information and trading plans through various online professional chat rooms.

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