Banks fined £2bn after currency rigging probe
Five banks have been fined more than £2bn by global regulators after a probe into traders rigging the £3trn-a-day foreign exchange (forex) market.
Royal Bank of Scotland, HSBC, Citibank, JP Morgan Chase and UBS were handed penalties totalling a record £1.1bn by Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and $1.5bn (£927m) by US authorities.
Investigators found traders from different firms formed groups using code names such as “the 3 musketeers” and “the A-team” to manipulate currency exchange rates to profit the banks at the expense of clients.
The FCA found that failure by the banks to control business practices undermined confidence in UK financial markets and put its integrity at risk, with 40% of forex trading taking place in London.
It said they had failed to act despite the previous scandal over the manipulation of the benchmark Libor interbank lending rate which had resulted in billions of pounds worth of fines.
The Bank of England was dragged into the scandal amid claims officials knew about the practice