September 25, 2013
Here we are, sadly, with traders again behaving badly. Another bust, another one bites the dust.
In this instance, ICAP brokers attempted to falsely report Libor rates in order to advantage another trader. This was insolent conduct impacting a benchmark rate that influences almost anything consumers buy on credit. These benchmarks are just too important to become a playground for some big-talking bad guys.
Email exchanges exhibit total disregard for proper protocols. In one case, champagne was promised for a favorable fixing. Some sought increased kickbacks or free meals—a curry meal for currying favors. One even mentioned (perhaps in jest) a Ferrari as payment for the favors. “They are making fortunes with these high fixings,” said one communication.
The attempts to manipulate Libor have been a black eye for our global financial system. It’s good that we have made progress at cleaning up this monstrous mess. I congratulate our Division of Enforcement for cracking yet another of these cases and appreciate the cooperative working relationship we have had with the Financial Conduct Authority in the U.K.
Let's hope other would-be crooks learn a lesson here and stay clear of future violations.
Last Updated: September 30, 2013