US prosecutors are coming to London, and they’ve got their sights set on the City.
Sources cited by Reuters suggest US Department of Justice (DoJ) officials will speak with current or former employees at HSBC and other banks based in the City in the coming weeks, as part of an investigation into foreign exchange market manipulation.
The DoJ investigation follows the record fines doled out to five global banks by other UK and US regulators for failing to do enough to prevent foreign exchange fiddling.
Earlier this month Citibank, HSBC, JP Morgan Chase, RBS and UBS were all fined over £200m by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority, while the same group (with the exception of HSBC) were all hit with fines over $270m (£172m) by the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
JP Morgan, Citi and UBS have all revealed they are under criminal investigation as part of the foreign exchange probe.
Already this year JP Morgan and Citi have had to make respective $13bn and $7bn settlement deals with the DoJ over mortgage sales made before the financial crisis.