Swiss regulator fines five banks $91 mln over FX cartel

Swiss regulator fines five banks $91 mln over FX cartel

Citigroup Inc., Barclays Plc, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and Japan’s MUFG Bank Ltd. will be fined 90 million Swiss francs (91 mln. USD) by the Switzerland’s competition regulator for their role in a cartel to rig the foreign exchange markets, several weeks after the EU authorities fined the five banks over 1 billion Euro for the same affair.

Citigroup is fined 28.5 million francs, Barclays – 27 million francs, RBS – 22.5 million francs, JPMorgan Chase & Co. – 9.5 million francs, and MUFG Bank Ltd. – 1.5 million francs, reveals a statement by the Switzerland’s Competition Commission, also known as Weko.

Traders, working at Barclays, Citigroup, JPMorgan, Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and UBS , used chatrooms to fix leading currency exchange rates for over six years in a cartel known as the ‘Three-way banana split’.

In the same time between 2009 and 2012 traders at Barclays, MUFG Bank, RBS and UBS operated the so-called ‘Essex Express’ cartel.

UBS Group AG will not be fined, because it revealed the cartel back in late 2013, while an investigation into Credit Suisse Group AG’s role is ongoing.

Since information about currency rate manipulations appeared first in 2013 more than a dozen banks and financial institutions have been fined for about 11,8 billion USD globally, while another 2,3 billion USD were handed to investors as a compensation.

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